These Are The 10 Safest States In America

We looked at the FBI data to determine which states are the safest in America, and where you want to live to be in harm’s way less.

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This article is an opinion based on facts and is meant as infotainment. Don’t freak out.

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There’s a common denominator that all safe states have.

They are the places where people sleep safer at night, where shootings and beatings don’t dominate the local news. The best states in America to raise kids, and awesome places to retire.

Because if crime is really low, everyone wants to be there (crummy weather aside).

The states below all share those qualities. There might be some surprises on this list, but when you look at the unbiased data, it’s hard to argue against. We had more than 10 million people read our worst cities in a state series, which was featured in hundreds of media outlets, including an NPR feature.

So we know what we’re talking about.

After analyzing every state in America, here is our list of the safest states to live in the United States:

  1. Vermont
  2. Idaho
  3. Virginia
  4. Maine
  5. New Hampshire
  6. Wyoming
  7. New Jersey
  8. Connecticut
  9. Kentucky
  10. Rhode Island

You might be surprised to see some of the states on this list. We understand there’s a lot of good in every place. However, according to data (which doesn’t measure things like beauty, ‘friendly people’ and community involvement), there aren’t safer options in America for making a place home.

The most dangerous state to live in America? New Mexico. More on that later.

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How do you decide if a place is safe or not?

In order to rank the safest American states, we had to determine what makes a place dangerous. It isn’t a stretch to assume that states where people are being killed and beaten up on a weekly basis are a pretty bad place to be.

So we scraped the internet for those criteria, and it spit out the answer. Like magic.

How we crunched the numbers

We threw a lot of criteria at this one in order to get the best, most complete results possible. Using FBI crime data, this is the criteria we used:

  • Number of murders per year per state
  • Number of robberies per year per state
  • Number of car thefts per year per state
  • Number of assaults per year per state

If you’d like to see the complete list of cities, scroll to the bottom of this post to see a chart of all 50 states.

Note: We get the crime numbers from the FBI, which gets its crime numbers from the states themselves. This list is based on data, and is entirely unbiased. It’s also not a testament to the effectiveness of local law enforcement.

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1. Vermont


Population: 626,384
Property crime: Lowest in the nation
Violent crime: Lowest in the nation

If you’re looking for the absolute safest state to live in America, than look no further than Vermont. In fact, most of the entire New England area north of New York State is actually a really safe place to be.

Vermont is the lowest in the country for both violent and property crimes. In fact, there were only 10 murders in the entire state of Vermont for the entire year in the last reporting year.

Some large cities in America see that in a bad weekend.

2. Idaho


Population: 1,634,293
Property crime: 7th lowest in the nation
Violent crime: 4th lowest in the nation

Idaho might get a knock for being a relatively boring place, but talk to the people to live there – when it’s quiet, it’s safe.

Idaho saw only about 3 murders a month, on average, which is far less than the national average. Additionally, there were only 6,400 burglaries in the last reporting year, which might sound like a lot, but only averages to about 125 a week for the entire state.

3. Virginia


Population: 8,643,203
Property crime: 5th lowest in the nation
Violent crime: 8th lowest in the nation

This might come as a surprise (or maybe not), but Virginia is a really safe place to live. Seeing as how the population is really high, you might think there would be lots of crime. You’d be wrong.

The Commonwealth is actually the 5th safest when it comes to property crimes. You’d have to drive pretty far north to see a place where there are less robberies per year than here.

4. Maine


Population: 1,330,003
Property crime: 2nd lowest in the nation
Violent crime: 12th lowest in the nation

After Vermont, Maine is the place to be if you want to avoid robberies and other property crimes such as car break ins and identity theft. Maybe the colder weather chills people out.

In Maine, there were less than 800 cars stolen in the last reporting year. To put that into perspective, in California, there were 150,000 cars stolen. Just wow.

5. New Hampshire


Population: 1,363,492
Property crime: 4th lowest in the nation
Violent crime: 10th lowest in the nation

Continuing our trend of the northeast being the safe haven in America, we come to New Hampshire, which has the 4th lowest number of property crimes, per capita, in the U.S.

In the last reporting year, there were only 12 murders for the entire year, which is astoundingly low. The leading state, Texas, saw nearly 100 times that number.

6. Wyoming


Population: 584,032
Property crime: 3rd lowest in the nation
Violent crime: 11th lowest in the nation

Sure, there are only about a half million people in the Cowboy State, and people are spaced out a lot more than they are in places like Florida and Minnesota. But look at New Mexico. There’s some wide open spaces there, too, and that’s the most dangerous place in the nation.

Only 900 people were the victim of an aggravated assault in Wyoming. Meaning there’s a really good chance you can walk around at night here without having to watch you back. In fact, you might have a better chance of being trampled by a bison than beaten by a mugger.

7. New Jersey


Population: 8,938,293
Property crime: 14th lowest in the nation
Violent crime: 3rd lowest in the nation

New Jersey? No way. Yes, that’s correct. This goes to show that just because people are packed on top of one another doesn’t mean they have to act uncivilized.

You might be shocked to learn that Jersey has the 3rd lowest violent crime rate in the state. And, as you can imagine, most of that is packed into places like Camden and Newark. Take those two cities out of the equation, and you’ve got a really safe place to live.

8. Connecticut


Population: 3,594,533
Property crime: 12th lowest in the nation
Violent crime: 7th lowest in the nation

Most Americans might think of Connecticut as a wealthy place, and for the most part, they’d be right. Does a relatively rich group of people commit less crime? Apparently so.

There were only 3,200 reported robberies in Connecticut for the entire last reporting year, which is well below the national average. Additionally, Connecticut saw 571 reported rapes that same year, too.

9. Kentucky


Population: 4,493,034
Property crime: 6th lowest in the nation
Violent crime: 14th lowest in the nation

You’d have to drive all the way to Iowa or Pennsylvania to get to a safer place outside of Kentucky (save Virginia, which we already talked about.) Kentuckians are a pretty chill group of people, seeing as how they rank 6th for number of robberies, car thefts and identity thefts each year.

Only 6,300 cars were stolen in the state, and only 23,000 robberies occurred here in the last reporting year. While it’s sad that is a low number, for America, it is.

10. Rhode Island


Population: 1,055,302
Property crime: 19th lowest in the nation
Violent crime: 9th lowest in the nation

Rounding out our tour of the safest states to live in America, we come to Rhode Island, which is not surprisingly, in the northeast. Sure, it’s a small state, and the number of property crimes is higher than the other states on this list, but overall, you could find much more dangerous places to live.

Rhode Island only saw 529 robberies for the entire year, which is about 1.5 a day. Does that make you jealous of where you live?

There You Have It

If you’re looking at American states where murders, rapes and robberies happen at a much lower rate than average, this is an accurate list.

If you’re also curious enough, here are the most dangerous states to live in America, according to science.

  1. New Mexico
  2. South Carolina
  3. Louisiana
  4. Florida
  5. Tennessee
State Rank Population Violent Crime Per 100k Property Crime Per 100k
Vermont 1 626,562 99.27 1,524.35
Idaho 2 1,634,464 212.18 1,854.80
Virginia 3 8,326,289 196.25 1,930.27
Maine 4 1,330,089 127.81 1,986.41
New Hampshire 5 1,326,813 196.11 1,962.67
Wyoming 6 584,153 195.50 1,964.72
New Jersey 7 8,938,175 261.19 1,734.06
Connecticut 8 3,596,677 236.94 1,920.38
Kentucky 9 4,413,457 211.63 2,246.90
Rhode Island 10 1,055,173 219.21 2,173.58
Minnesota 11 5,457,173 229.15 2,297.47
South Dakota 12 853,175 326.54 1,863.86
Iowa 13 3,107,126 273.47 2,093.77
North Dakota 14 739,482 265.05 2,110.26
Pennsylvania 15 12,787,209 314.10 1,931.74
New York 16 19,746,227 381.83 1,718.21
West Virginia 17 1,850,326 302.00 2,034.67
Wisconsin 18 5,757,564 290.30 2,088.35
Massachusetts 19 6,745,408 391.36 1,857.07
Utah 20 2,942,902 215.64 2,878.49
Nebraksa 21 1,881,503 280.36 2,523.46
Illinois 22 12,880,580 370.04 2,075.88
Oregon 23 3,970,239 232.33 2,879.05
Montana 24 1,023,579 323.67 2,472.89
Colorado 25 5,355,866 309.08 2,530.12
Ohio 26 11,594,163 284.88 2,799.06
Michigan 27 9,909,877 427.33 2,043.89
Hawaii 28 1,419,561 259.24 3,050.03
Mississippi 29 2,994,079 278.48 2,921.17
California 30 38,802,500 396.13 2,441.06
Indiana 31 6,596,855 365.31 2,649.38
Kansas 32 2,904,021 348.59 2,735.21
North Carolina 33 9,943,964 329.52 2,873.07
Maryland 34 5,976,407 446.10 2,507.51
Washington 35 7,061,530 285.15 3,706.08
Georgia 36 10,097,343 377.30 3,281.22
Missouri 37 6,063,589 442.91 2,906.48
Oklahoma 38 3,878,051 405.98 2,990.73
Texas 39 26,956,958 405.88 3,019.38
Nevada 40 2,839,099 635.59 2,625.41
Arizona 41 6,731,484 399.85 3,197.51
Alaska 42 736,732 635.78 2,760.03
Delaware 43 935,614 489.09 2,982.00
Alabama 44 4,849,377 427.42 3,177.60
Arkansas 45 2,966,369 480.15 3,338.02
Tennessee 46 6,549,352 608.43 3,060.56
Florida 47 19,893,297 540.49 3,415.45
Louisiana 48 4,649,676 514.75 3,458.82
South Carolina 49 4,832,482 497.72 3,460.27
New Mexico 50 2,085,572 597.39 3,542.29

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