Like the rest of the US, Alaska experienced an uptick in violent crime from 2015 to 2016, according to the most recent FBI crime report. However, Alaska’s murder rate decreased over the same time period, whereas nationally it increased.
While even one loss of life is too many, Alaska’s public officials and law enforcement leaders deserve recognition for continually pursuing innovative ways to reduce murder and other violent crimes. We applaud new crime initiatives like the Alaska Anti-Violent Crime Strategy, which seeks to enhance collaboration among federal, state, and local officials in an effort to combat violent crime. What’s more, leaders reintroduced Project Safe Neighborhoods, a program that led to a reduction in violent crime over a decade ago. Collaborative relationships and pioneering initiatives like these can go a long way toward reducing Alaska’s crime rate in the coming years.
For the approximately 35,000 residents of Alaska’s five safest cities, there’s even more encouraging news—the average violent crime rate of these cities was 42% less than the national average. Examining the FBI data further, we discovered that of all the crime reported in these cities (and in the state), most were property crimes—not violent crimes. In fact, violent offenses represented less than 10% of all crimes among the top three safest cities of Sitka, Homer, and Kenai.
While property crimes account for most reported offenses, Unalaska—the fourth-ranked city on our list—cited a mere six property crimes per 1,000 people. That’s over 77% less than the national average of approximately twenty-eight property crimes per 1,000 people.
SafeWise encourages everyone to be more vigilant about personal safety and home security, even if you live in one of the forty-ninth state’s safest cities. Start by taking a look at our Alaska Safety Directory, where you’ll find a variety of crime prevention resources along with other helpful safety and security information.
The 5 Safest Cities in Alaska
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.36
Property crimes per 1,000: 16.86
Total crime: 8.07% violent, 91.93% property
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.78
Property crimes per 1,000: 29.75
Total crime: 5.98% violent, 94.02% property
Violent crimes per 1,000: 3.09
Property crimes per 1,000: 54.05
Total crime: 5.72% violent, 94.28% property
Violent crimes per 1,000: 3.54
Property crimes per 1,000: 6.42
Total crime: 55.14% violent, 54.86% property
Violent crimes per 1,000: 3.65
Property crimes per 1,000: 31.87
Total crime: 11.45% violent, 88.55% property
How We Chose the Safest Cities in Alaska
To identify the five safest cities in Alaska, we reviewed the latest FBI crime report statistics and population data. Cities that fell below identified population thresholds or that failed to submit a complete crime report to the FBI were excluded from the ranking system.
Our evaluation is based on the number of reported violent crimes (aggravated assault, murder, rape, and robbery) in each city. If there was a tie, we also factored in the number of property crimes (burglary, arson, larceny-theft, and motor vehicle theft). To level the playing field, we calculated the rate of crimes per 1,000 people in each city. This makes it easier to directly compare the likelihood of these crimes occurring in cities with vastly different populations.
Wherever you live, feeling safe in your home can bring greater peace of mind and happiness. Whether your city made our list or not, we recommend adding extra security to your home with monitored security services provided by the nation’s leading home security providers.
To learn more about the home security options available to you, check out SafeWise’s picks for Best Home Security Systems of 2018 or select the city nearest you in the drop down menu below.
If you would like to contact a SafeWise Safest Cities Analyst, please email email@example.com.
Written by Alexia Chianis
Wanderlust junky and mom of two, Alexia is a former police officer and U.S. Army Captain who draws on her experiences to write about a myriad of safety topics. Learn more