Almost 60% of respondents to our 2020 State of Safety survey said they had very high or high concern for their safety every day—compared to just 46% that claimed the same level of concern nationwide.
Despite that concern, only 25% of Alabama residents reported owning a home security system, and 27% don’t use any kind of protection for their home or property.
Reports of personal experience with violent crime increased 80% year over year in Alabama.
With violent and property crime rates that are higher than national averages, the levels of concern in Alabama make sense. But are Alabamans’ crime-related fears aligned with the actual crime rates in their state?
Being robbed on the street was the top violent crime concern in Alabama, with 45% of respondents naming it their biggest worry—but robbery wasn’t the most common violent crime among the safest cities.
Robbery accounted for 11% of the total violent crimes reported in Alabama’s safest cities, and 16% of all violent crime statewide.
Assault by a stranger is the crime respondents named most likely to actually happen.
Aggravated assault was the most common violent crime among the safest cities, with 638 total incidents making up 79% of all reported violent crimes.
Across the state, aggravated assault accounted for 75% of all violent crimes reported.
Property Crime in Alabama: Fear vs. Reality
Someone breaking in when you’re not home was the biggest property crime worry in Alabama, with 72% of respondents naming it their top concern—that’s 10 percentage points higher than the national average.
Among Alabama’s safest cities, there were 818 total burglaries reported—13% of the total property crimes reported. Statewide, burglaries made up 21% of all property crime.
Having property stolen is the crime considered most likely to happen, according to State of Safety survey participants.
The most common property crime among the safest cities was larceny theft, claiming around 81% of all incidents reported.
Overall, there were 28.2 property crime incidents per 1,000 people in Alabama. That’s almost seven percentage points above the national rate of 22.
34% of respondents reported experiencing a property crime in the past 12 months, compared to just 26% across the country.
A Closer Look at Alabama’s Safest Cities of 2020
For the purposes of this report, the terms “dangerous” and “safest” refer explicitly to crime rates as calculated from FBI crime data—no other characterization of any community is implied or intended.
Two brand new cities joined the ranks this year, including Rainbow City, which claimed the number one spot. The other newcomer is Mountain Brook at number three. These cities didn’t report crime statistics to the FBI last year.
Rebecca is the lead safety reporter and in-house expert for SafeWise.com. She has been a journalist and blogger for over 25 years, with a focus on home and community safety for the past six. Rebecca spends dozens of hours every month testing and evaluating security products and strategies. Her safety expertise is sought after by publications, broadcast journalists, non-profit organizations, podcasts, and more. You can find her work and contributions in places like TechCrunch, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, HGTV, MSN, and an ever-growing library of radio and TV clips. Learn more