With only one month under 2019’s belt, the National Council for Home Safety ended the month of January with the release of its annual Safest Cities in Missouri. The list was compiled using data from the FBI Uniform Crime Report statistics for cities with populations in excess of 10,000 people. A total of 7,639 cities were factored into the ranking.
Cities were judged based on the number of reported violent crimes like rape, murder, aggravated assault and robbery, and property crimes like larceny-theft, arson, burglary and motor vehicle theft, per every 1,000 people. Certain variables also were weighted, with violent crimes accounting for 1.5 of the total due to the increased severity.
For another year, multiple West County communities claimed top spots in the list, including Ballwin and Town & County.
The city of Ballwin again rose to first place after previously claiming the first-place spot in 2018 and receiving a third-place ranking in 2017.
With a population of about 30,609, the average rate for violent crimes in the city was a reported 0.396 per 1,000 people, and about 5.578 per 1,000 for property crimes, which is a drop from the previous year’s rate of about 7.71 per 1,000 people.
The municipality of Town & Country, which stole the second-place spot in 2018, seized the third-place ranking in 2019. Webster Groves rose to claim the second-place spot instead.
With a population of about 11,158 residents, Town & County reported a violent crime rate of about 0.448 per 1,000 residents and only reported five violent crimes overall, the least of any other municipality on the list. The city saw a documented property crime rate of about 11.652 per 1,000 people.
In the top 10, the city of Manchester ranked sixth. With a population of 18,112, the city reported a violent crime rate of 0.496 per 1,000 people and a property crime rate of 12.008 per 1,000.
Creve Coeur also claimed a top ten spot as the eighth safest city in the state, with a documented violent crime rate of 1.280 per 1,000 people, and a reported property crime rate of about 16.217 per 1,000.
Chesterfield placed in the top 20.
In 2019, the state of Missouri ranked overall as the 36th safest state for property crime [where first equals lowest crime] and had a recorded violent crime rate above the national average with an estimated 3.9 crimes per 1,000 people. The national average for violent crime is 3.47 per 1,000.
Considered alongside national averages, Missouri’s property crime levels are slightly under at a ratio of 0.84 with a reported 34.13 crimes per 1,000 when compared to the national average of 40.43.