Minnesota – Called “the land of 10,000 lakes”, this mid-western state was sold to the early USA by France as part of the Louisiana Purchase. For many years, it was known as a great center of prairie agriculture but by the mid-20th century, it had also developed a thriving industrial presence. Today that industrial base has been augmented by new and high-tech industries and scientific research centers.
Around 5.4 million people call the state home, of which a little over 60% inhabit the greater Minneapolis-Saint Paul “twin cities” metropolitan area. It ranks 30th in the US for population density. Economically, Minnesota is an affluent state, being one of the wealthiest in the Union. Its standard of living index is the highest in the USA and it also features towards the top in education assessment.
Minnesota household incomes are in excess of 10% higher than US averages at $68,000. Specifically, in the Minneapolis-Saint Paul area, the excess is even higher at 25% above US norms, being $77,000. State per capita income at nearly $36,000 (2017) is approximately 10% higher than US averages.
The crimes statistics for the state are roughly at half the national average. Specifically:
- It’s the 14th safest state for property crime (where 1st = lowest crime)
- Minnesota’s violent crime levels have a ratio of 0.53 to the national average with 1.86 crimes per 1,000 against the national average of 3.47. This makes it the 5th safest state for violent crime.
- Property crime levels are similarly low at 23.62 per 1,000 compared to the national average of 40.43 – giving a ratio of 0.58.
The safest areas statistically are:
- Big Lake
- Lino Lakes
- Grand Rapids
Safest Cities in Minnesota, 2019
|Rank||City||Violent Crimes||Property Crimes||Violent Crime Rate||Property Crime Rate|
|6||South Lake Minnetonka||11||114||0.891||9.236|
|50||North St. Paul||19||277||1.515||22.081|
|54||Inver Grove Heights||74||677||2.099||19.203|
|62||South St. Paul||75||519||3.706||25.649|
|63||St. Louis Park||49||1,321||0.993||26.765|
|67||White Bear Lake||44||703||1.688||26.971|
|81||West St. Paul||89||971||4.500||49.095|
To identify the safest cities in Minnesota, we reviewed the most recent FBI Uniform Crime Report statistics. A total of 7,639 cities were factored into this ranking with populations ranging from 7,639 to 4,007,147. However, we eliminated any cities that failed to submit a complete crime report to the FBI and removed cities with populations under 10,000.
Overall, data from 8,793 law enforcement agencies that represented more 193 million of the US population helped us draw interesting insights between the size of the police force and incidence of crime.
There are two broad classifications of crimes: violent crimes and non-violent crimes. According to the FBI, “Violent crime is composed of four offenses: murder and non-negligent manslaughter, rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. Violent crimes are defined in the UCR Program as those offenses that involve force or threat of force. Property crime includes the offenses of burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson. The object of the theft-type offenses is the taking of money or property, but there is no force or threat of force against the victims. ”
We computed the total number of crimes reported by each city by adding violent crimes and property crimes. We then rated them using the population of the city and created a crime rate as the number of crimes per 1,000 population. Then we transformed the total crime rate variable so that the skewness was reduced and we normalized it so the final number became a score between 0 and 1.
Next, we computed a new variable called Police Adequacy (TotalCrimes / Number of police employees). We consider that the smaller the police adequacy statistic is, the safer the city is. We transformed and normalized this police adequacy variable also, resulting in a score between 0 and 1. Finally, we combined the two scores to create a safety score for each city.