Scottsdale and Gilbert, Arizona on Top 5 Safest Cities List

Scottsdale and Gilbert rank among the top five safest cities in America according to a recent survey by Law Street Media.

Law Street Media, a web site focused on legal and public policy issues, compiled data from the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report Statistics.

It found Gilbert has the second lowest violent crime rate among cities with a population greater than 200,000.Law Street Media attributed the East Valley town’s low crime rate to “efficient policing system.”

There is only one officer for every 965 people in Gilbert, according to Law Street Media. But their police force does “a lot with a little,” said Dana Berchman, Chief Digital Officer of Gilbert.

“We have less, but then we have less crime so it’s a great source of pride. When people are looking to move or create new businesses, safety is definitely a factor so this is an honor,” she said.

Scottsdale came in at number five on the list. Law Street Media credited Scottsdale’s high police-to-population ratio and its “vibrant economy” for the city’s safety.

However, Scottsdale Mayor Jim Lane saw a flaw in the latter sentiment.

“The economy was in trouble the past five years but we actually got safer during that time,” he said. “It’s because Scottsdale is a tight community that sees themselves as allies with the police.”

Lane said Scottsdale police have continuously shown an eagerness to work with the community as opposed to simply being overseers. He said that relationship is why Scottsdale has, for many years, been a safe community.

Officials with the town of Gilbert did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

Irvine, Calif., was ranked number one on the list. Other cities in the top 10 were Henderson, Nev., Garland, Texas, and Virginia Beach, Va.

The cities were ranked using a standard measure of violent crimes per 100,000 people, according to Law Street Media. The FBI’s four major violent crime categories were used which include murder, robberies, aggravated assault, and forcible rape.

Law Street Media is a website founded this year by New York Times Magazine writer, John Jenkins. The site works to inform readers about law and public policy.

Jenkins said the site will continue collecting and publishing city crime data so that readers can “dig into the rankings and see not only how safe their city is, but how the resources devoted to policing compare to other cities.”

A complete list of the top ten safest cities can be found at: http://lawstreetmedia.com/crime-in-america-top-10-safest-cities-over-200000/.

Courtesy of AZ Republic Nov 26th, 2013

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