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Study: 4 of America's most violent neighborhoods are in Detroit

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American Street is at the center of a Detroit neighborhood a new study named the most violent of them all. American Street is at the center of a Detroit neighborhood a new study named the most violent of them all.
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DETROIT (WJBK) -

It's not surprising that Detroit, America's most violent city, would have the country's most violent neighborhood.  But Detroit is also home to America's second, third and seventh most violent neighborhood, as well.

According to a new study by NeighborhoodScout.com, a person living in these neighborhoods has worse than a one in ten chance of being robbed at gunpoint, beaten senseless, raped or murdered.  This shocked even us.

So my partner Matt Phillips and I took a drive to the west side to the exact center of the most violent neighborhood of them all on American Street.

How long do you expect to live, I asked a 21-year-old resident.

"At least 90 or a hundred," he said, but added, "You never know when it's your time to go."

"What's your dream?" I asked him.

"My dream, I really want to play professional baseball.  I was doing that at one point in time," he said.

Also see: A look at Detroit's most dangerous neighborhoods

It's a typical type of Detroit neighborhood, the kind not included in the downtown talks of money and real estate and rebirth.  Here it goes church, liquor store, church, liquor store.  Looking around, it's hard to know which has had the greater influence.

"We just heard a bunch of gunshots and [saw] a car, and that was it," the 21-year-old said.  "That's when I found out a person I knew got killed."

"When I [saw] it happen, it messed me up then," he added.  "Then as I got older... I started... to just understand what happened basically."

"Bottom line is here these single parents are trying to raise these kids.  These kids don't have anybody at home but television, and they're running loose," another person commented.

"We didn't do that kind of stuff.  Our parents were parents.  The parents of today, they just aren't the same as ours, and I think that's wherein lies the real problem," a police officer said.

"And then not enough uncles in blue to clean up the mess," I said.

"Exactly. They won't let us be uncles like I had an uncle in blue.  He wouldn't allow it.  He would've kicked my you know what," the officer remarked.

"It's to the fact if they really care or not, honestly, if they really care to solve the crime because there's so many unsolved crimes in Detroit it's ridiculous.  It's just a cycle.  It just keep going on and on," the 21-year-old said.

"People started losing their homes.  People started losing hope.  People didn't have anywhere to go," said one person.

"Your options are very limited.  You can leave and try to have a future, or you can stay and you're rolling the dice," another said.

We're all cousins living in this thing called America, and when we're gone, the talk about us and what we were, whether you lived on American Street or the Avenue of the Americas, it's up to us about what they'll say.

"My heart is in Detroit.  I grew up in this city.  I know this city well.  [I'm not] saying I'm going to be here for the rest of my life, but at this point in time I'm here.  I'm dealing with it," the 21-year-old said.

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