Editor's Note: This article has been update for 2019. This is our fifth time rankings the safest places to live in North Dakota.
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We all want the finer things in life. Love, comfort and safety are at the top of everyone's list.
For a lot of people who live in the fine state of North Dakota, safety isn't a problem, but we don't all get to live in the safest cities -- unless of course you live in Stanley.
The purpose of this post is to determine where the safest cities to live are in the Peace Garden State. Those places where crime is usually something you hear about on Facebook, but not from your local paper.
In all, we analyzed 21 cities in North Dakota with a population of more than 2,000 using the latest FBI crime data.
Here are the 10 safest places to live in North Dakota for 2019:
Population: 36,624 Rank Last Year: 9 (Up 3) Violent Crimes Per 100k: 144 (7th safest) Property Crimes Per 100k: 1,348 (6th safest) More on West Fargo:Photos | Search Homes For Sale | Data
West Fargo is a city in Cass County, North Dakota, United States. It is, as of the 2016 Census Estimates, the fifth largest city in the state of North Dakota with a population estimated at 34,858, and it is one of the state's fastest growing cities. West Fargo was founded in 1926. The city is part of the Fargo-Moorhead, ND-MN Metropolitan Statistical Area.
Population: 23,967 Rank Last Year: 8 (No Change) Violent Crimes Per 100k: 162 (8th safest) Property Crimes Per 100k: 1,944 (9th safest) More on Dickinson:Photos | Search Homes For Sale | Data
Dickinson is a city in Stark County, North Dakota, United States. It is the county seat of Stark County. The population was 17,787 at the 2010 census. The U.S. Census Bureau estimated 2015 population is 23,765.
Population: 7,841 Rank Last Year: 10 (Up 1) Violent Crimes Per 100k: 165 (9th safest) Property Crimes Per 100k: 2,257 (11th safest) More on Wahpeton:Photos | Search Homes For Sale | Data
Wahpeton is a city in Richland County, in southeastern North Dakota, United States. It is located along the Bois de Sioux River at its confluence with the Otter Tail River, forming the Red River of the North. Wahpeton is the county seat of Richland County. The U.S. Census Bureau estimated the city's 2015 population was 7,899.
Population: 6,558 Rank Last Year: 15 (Up 5) Violent Crimes Per 100k: 167 (10th safest) Property Crimes Per 100k: 2,302 (12th safest) More on Valley City:Photos | Search Homes For Sale | Data
Valley City is a city in Barnes County, North Dakota, United States. It is the county seat of Barnes County. The population was 6,585 during the 2010 census, making it the thirteenth largest city in North Dakota. Valley City was founded in 1874.
How we calculated the safest cities in North Dakota for 2019
While there are surveys and public polls on what cities in a state are the safest, we didn't want to rely on speculation and opinion. Instead, we looked at the hard numbers from the FBI's most recent report of crime (Sept 2018) in North Dakota.
Specifically, we analyzed the FBI's Uniform Crime Report which summarizes the number of property crimes and violent crimes in each city per year. We used two criteria:
Violent crimes per capita (murders, assaults, rapes, armed robberies)
Property crimes per capita (thefts, burglaries, motor vehicle thefts)
For example, there were a total of 3 crimes committed in Stanley which had a reported population of 2,974. That means the number of crimes per capita is 0.001 which translates into a 1 in 991 chance of being the victim of a crime.
We only looked at cities that have populations of more than 2,000 people reported to the FBI in 2017. This left us with a total of 21 of the biggest cities in North Dakota to rank.
We ranked each city for each criteria from 1 to 21 where 1 in any particular category is the safest.
Next, we averaged each places two criteria to create a Safety Index. We crowned the place with the lowest overall Safety Score "The Safest Place In North Dakota".
Note: This report is not an analysis of the effectiveness of local police departments, nor does it reflect the fact that people from out of town may come into a community and cause a crime. It simply looks at where crimes occurred most frequently, based on a city's population.
There You Have It - The Safest Cities In The Peace Garden State
Looking at the data, you can tell that Stanley is as safe as they come, according to science and data.
But as most North Dakota residents would agree, almost every place here has its safe and not safe parts. So just make sure you're informed ahead of time.