Safest Cities in Utah – 2020

Last Updated on January 19, 2020

While you’d expect Utah, a state largely populated by teetotaling, law-abiding members of the Church of Latter Day Saints, to be among the safest states, the Beehive State doesn’t quite meet expectations. That’s not to say Utah is dangerous: it’s violent crime rate of 2.33 per 1,000 is well below national levels, however, its rate of property crime is about average compared to the rest of the country.

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Crime rate per 1,000
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Law enforcement per 1,000

Nevertheless, Utah’s safest cities boast stunningly low crime rates, on par with the safest municipalities in the United States, validating the preconceived notions many have about the state. Unlike many states, police departments in Utah often serve two or more cities, resulting in a merging of statistical data for two cities. Let’s take a closer look at Utah’s safest communities. 

Utah’s safest statistical area is the  merged communities of Highland and Alpine, which are serviced by the Lone Peak Police Department. The statistical area has a combined population of nearly 30,000, yet recorded a mere 7 violent crimes in 2018, resulting in a violent crime rate of 0.23 per 1,000.

The 2nd safest city in Utah is Mapleton, a modestly sized community of just over 10K in the Provo-Orem Metropolitan Statistical Area. Mapleton logged exactly 1 violent crime in 2018, amounting to a near nonexistent violent crime rate of 0.1 per 1,000K.

The combined statistical area of Santa Clara and Ivins, located in Washington county, is Utah’s #3 safest police jurisdiction. Together, the cities have a violent crime rate around 7 times lower than nationwide levels.

#4 Santaquin/Genola are two peaceful and picturesque cities in the Provo-Orem metropolitan area. Added up, they have a population of about 13.5K and recorded just 4 violent crimes between them in 2018.

#5 Saratoga Springs is one of the fastest growing cities in the state, with families drawn to its pristine location at the foothills of the Lake Mountains, and the city’s low crime rates.

Utah’s Safest Cities

UTCityPopulationViolent
crime
Property
crime
Law enforcement
employees
Total crimesCrime rate per 1,000Violent crimes per 1,000Property crimes per 1,000Law enforcement per 1,000
1Lone Peak299697151271585.270.235.040.90
2Mapleton1004115610575.680.105.581.00
3Santa Clara/Ivins166719126151358.100.547.560.90
4Santaquin/Genola135844114141188.690.298.391.03
5Saratoga Springs3178632226282588.121.017.110.88
6Kaysville3240424246292708.330.747.590.89
7Spanish Fork4009512352403649.080.308.781.00
8Syracuse3030123235262588.510.767.760.86
9Pleasant Grove39641294243745311.430.7310.700.93
10North Ogden1977162322023812.040.3011.731.01
11Heber16527262282725415.371.5713.801.63
12Lehi65125596945975311.560.9110.660.91
13Pleasant View1066311108911911.161.0310.130.84
14Farmington25006153062432112.840.6012.240.96
15St. George862021961388158158418.382.2716.101.83
16Bountiful44317436425768515.460.9714.491.29
17Hurricane17676222832830517.261.2416.011.58
18Roy38834535144456714.601.3613.241.13
19North Park1571361691017511.140.3810.760.64
20Logan51508708528392217.901.3616.541.61
21Bluffdale14648131771219012.970.8912.080.82
22Clearfield31558594624052116.511.8714.641.27
23Payson20079103182332816.340.5015.841.15
24Clinton22179133011931414.160.5913.570.86
25Brigham City19362283622839020.141.4518.701.45
26American Fork/Cedar Hills40366227024672417.940.5517.391.14
27Washington27705354773351218.481.2617.221.19
28Grantsville11326291921522119.512.5616.951.32
29South Ogden17174253292535420.611.4619.161.46
30Orem99221691827119189619.110.7018.411.20
31North Salt Lake21190274052843220.391.2719.111.32
32Layton780521341561110169521.721.7220.001.41
33Provo1179862072090127229719.471.7517.711.08
34Vernal10484322612329327.953.0524.902.19
35Springville33824236273565019.220.6818.541.03
36Cottonwood Heights34054437874983024.371.2623.111.44
37Draper485188497656106021.851.7320.121.15
38Cedar City32242707514582125.462.1723.291.40
39Centerville18013233801940322.371.2821.101.05
40South Jordan7432177145365153020.591.0419.550.87
41Sandy970571592613126277228.561.6426.921.30
42West Jordan1153922983036146333428.892.5826.311.27
43Ogden876164173218174363541.494.7636.731.99
44West Valley1371329454915250586042.736.8935.841.82
45Tooele35065104114341124735.562.9732.601.17
46Salt Lake City2026331480125165831399669.077.3061.772.88
47South Salt Lake25160242179668203881.009.6271.382.70
48Murray49675216302787324365.284.3560.941.75

Methodology

To identify the safest cities, we reviewed the most recent FBI Uniform Crime Report statistics. We eliminated any cities that failed to submit a complete crime report to the FBI and cities with populations under 10,000. This left 3,381 cities (out of a total of 9,251). 

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 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 normalized.

Data from 2,831 law enforcement agencies was then collected to determine police adequacy (TotalCrimes / Number of police employees).  We consider that the smaller the police adequacy statistic is, the safer the city is. This variable was also transformed and normalized.

Finally, the two variables were combined to create a safety score for each city.