iowa safe cities 2018

Iowa’s crime statistics are impressive. The Hawkeye State bests its Midwestern neighbors in most categories, earning the title as safest state in the region. Iowa’s safest community is the small town of Norwalk (population 10,371). Norwalk’s 16 violent crimes and 87 property crimes logged in the latest year for which data is available suggest that the local police force is often left with little to do.

4.31 Average violent crime per 1,000
32.20 Average property crime per 1,000

Pella, a similarly sized small town, ranks second. Its violent crime rate of just 0.96 per 1,000 should be a source of comfort for its 10.368 inhabitants. North Liberty (#3) has a violent crime rate a bit higher than the preceding two Iowa communities, but its property crime rate of 7.35 per 1,000 is the lowest in the state for every town and city with a population over 10,000. Fourth on the list is Johnston: larger than the others with a population of 21,635, yet with the low crime rates characteristic of a small town. Ankeny (#5) is significantly larger than the preceding communities with over 59,000 inhabitants, but its 2.16 violent crimes per 1,000 is a laudatory feat.

1.  NORWALK

10,371 Population
16 Violent Crimes
87 Property Crimes
norwalk crime 2018

2. PELLA

10,368 Population
10 Violent Crimes
105 Property Crimes
pella crime 2018

3. NORTH LIBERTY

16,458 Population
52 Violent Crimes
121 Property Crimes
north liberty crime 2018

4. JOHNSTON

21,635 Population
26 Violent Crimes
226 Property Crimes
johnston crime 2018

5. ANKENY

59,236 Population
128 Violent Crimes
756 Property Crimes
ankeny crime 2018

Iowa's Safest Cities

RankCityPopulationViolent
crime
Property
crime
Violent per 1,000Property per 1,000
1Norwalk10,37116871.548.39
2Pella10,368101050.9610.13
3North Liberty16,458521213.167.35
4Johnston21,635262261.2010.45
5Ankeny59,2361287562.1612.76
6Urbandale45,012677001.4915.55
7Ames66,3331071,0771.6116.24
8Marion37,845716041.8815.96
9Boone12,702481693.7813.30
10Cedar Falls41,651667081.5817.00
11Spencer11,21192300.8020.52
12Iowa City75,5271971,5512.6120.54
13West Des Moines65,6311491,5132.2723.05
14Waverly10,10411411811.2811.68
15Indianola15,601933505.9622.43
16Muscatine24,0101585316.5822.12
17Oskaloosa11,626493024.2125.98
18Altoona17,503315231.7729.88
19Coralville20,957586622.7731.59
20Newton15,102544613.5830.53
21Dubuque59,0262101,8323.5631.04
22Storm Lake10,959583205.2929.20
23Marshalltown27,6281638135.9029.43
24Fort Madison10,654533584.9733.60
25Waterloo68,4705072,1207.4030.96
26Cedar Rapids131,1813875,0192.9538.26
27Mason City27,230371,1221.3641.20
28Sioux City82,8193653,2474.4139.21
29Fort Dodge24,5571449795.8639.87
30Ottumwa24,5431011,0744.1243.76
31Des Moines211,5011,4978,8817.0841.99
32Burlington25,3762071,0268.1640.43
33Clinton25,9062291,1608.8444.78
34Davenport103,1187505,0017.2748.50
35Keokuk10,577765367.1950.68
36Council Bluffs62,6421503,8622.3961.65

METHODOLOGY

To identify the safest cities in Iowa, we reviewed the most recent FBI Uniform Crime Report statistics along with our own population data and internal research. We eliminated any cities that failed to submit a complete crime report to the FBI and removed cities with populations under 10,000.


The remaining cities were ranked based on the number of reported violent crimes (aggravated assault, murder, rape, and robbery) and property crimes (burglary, arson, larceny-theft, and motor vehicle theft) per 1,000 people. These variables were then weighted, with violent crimes accounting for 1.5 of the total (due to their severity) than property crimes. 

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