The SafeWise Team is pleased to release the ninth annual Safest Cities report.
Alaska’s 5 Safest Cities of 2023
Here are the 5 Safest Cities in Alaska for 2023
See if your city made the full list.
Both violent crime rates and property crime rates decreased year-over-year in Alaska. Its violent crime rate is still above the national average, but Alaska's property crime rate fell below the national average for the first time in Safest Cities history.
In this report
2023 Alaska crime rates
Alaska has the fifth-highest violent crime rate and the fourth-lowest property crime rate in the US. With that said, crime rates declined in The Last Frontier compared to the previous year.
Level of concern and experience with crime in Alaska
According to our State of Safety survey, Alaskans have a low level of concern about their overall safety (40%) and are more likely to feel safe in their state than the average American (53% AK, 50% US). They're also the least likely Americans to think that crime is increasing (61%).
About 51% of Alaskans indicated they worry about package theft, and 37% said they've actually experienced package theft in the 12 months prior to the survey. Verified delivery is the most popular form of package theft prevention among Alaskans (32%), but 27% of survey respondents said they do nothing to protect their packages.
Level of concern and experience with natural disasters in Alaska
For our 2023 State of Safety Survey, we asked participants about their natural disaster concerns, preparations, and experiences. Most Alaskans were worried about earthquakes (65%).
Residents of Alaska were also more likely to have emergency kits (51%), a family emergency plan (42%), safety equipment (25%), and preventative property modifications (21%) compared to the national averages.
Around 12% of Alaskans reported having to evacuate for a natural disaster in the 12 months prior to the survey, which is 1 percentage point higher than the national average.
Crime concerns in Alaska
We asked Alaskans which crimes they worry may happen to them. See if Alaskans are concerned about the same crime issues as the rest of the country.
View the complete 2023 State of Safety report.
Violent crime in Alaska: Fear vs. reality
Alaska is one of 23 states where violent crime decreased compared to the previous year. Alaska’s violent crime rate is the fifth-highest in the nation, but that's an improvement over last year when it topped the charts.
Alaskans worry less than the average American about violent crime (39% AK, 49% US), but their concern has increased by 34% year-over-year.
- Alaska’s violent crime rate is 4.6 per 1,000 people (US 4.0).
- Violent crime in Alaska decreased by 34% year over year, which is the second-largest decrease in the nation behind Arizona (46%).
- Rape accounts for 26% of all violent crime in Alaska, which is the fourth-highest in the nation and 15 percentage points above the national average.
- 47% of Alaska residents use some form of personal protection (US 39%) with concealed firearms leading the way (51%).
- 37% of Alaskans say their personal safety has been affected by the pandemic (US 44%).
- Alaska has the highest rate of officer deaths and injuries in the nation (0.5 per 100,000 people) and the third-highest rate of officer-involved subject deaths and injuries (2.0 per 100,000 people) behind Wyoming (2.4) and New Mexico (2.3).
Attitudes about gun violence in Alaska
- In our latest State of Safety survey, 33% of Alaskans told us that they worried about gun violence, which represents a 74% increase in concern year-over-year.
- 7% of Alaskans have experienced a gun violence incident in the 12 months prior to the survey—5 percentage points lower than the national average but a 40% increase compared to the previous year.
- 0 mass shooting events occurred in Alaska during the past reporting year.
- Firearms are the most common form of personal protection (51%) and property protection (41%) in Alaska.
Property crime in Alaska: Fear vs. reality
Alaska experienced a 49% decrease in property crime year-over-year—the largest in the nation and well above the 1.3% decrease nationwide. On a regional level, Alaska is the only state along the Pacific coast with a decrease in property crime.
Results from our State of Safety survey show the opposite trend: 28% of Alaskan respondents said they had experienced a property crime in the 12 months prior to the survey, which is 5 percentage points higher than last year’s survey results.
- 37% of Alaska residents reported experiencing package theft in our latest survey, which is 3 percentage points higher than the national average.
- The most popular forms of property protection among Alaskans are firearms, security cameras, and guard dogs.
- 29% of Alaskans say the security of their property has been affected by the pandemic (US 28%).
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A closer look at the safest cities in Alaska
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.
Violent crime in Alaska's safest cities
- Except for North Slope Borough, which reported 2, Alaska's safest cities reported 0 murders during the 2023 reporting year.
- Each of the top 5 cities reported fewer than 30 total violent crimes, with the exception of North Slope Borough, which saw 91.
- Aggravated assault was the most common violent crime reported in each of Alaska’s safest cities. The second was rape.
- Palmer had the lowest violent crime rate (1.6) among Alaska's 2023 safest cities.
- Palmer and Ketchikan have seen decreasing violent crime rates over the last 3 years.
Property crime in Alaska's safest cities
- Unalaska and North Slope Borough reported property crimes below the national average.
- North Slope Borough is the only safest city in Alaska to report an increase in property crime for the reporting year.
- Palmer and Ketchikan have seen decreasing property crime rates over the last 3 years.
- First-place Unalaska and third-place North Slope Borough have the same property crime rate: 6.2 incidents per 1,000 people. That's less than half the property crime rate of fifth-place Homer (13.0).
- Despite reporting 0 motor vehicle thefts, Ketchikan had the highest number of property crimes among Alaska's safest cities.
How to make a safe home anywhere
Whether your city made our list or not, we encourage everyone to be proactive about home security. One of the best ways to stop a burglary before it happens is to add a home security system.
Find security and safety resources in your area
Didn't find your city?
We calculated crime rates for every city in the state that met our population threshold, based on the state’s median population as calculated using FBI data. To request a report of the remaining cities in your state email firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line: Safest Cities Full Report.
NOTE: If your city is missing from our full report, it means that it was below the population threshold or didn’t submit a complete crime report to the FBI in 2021.
Related articles on SafeWise
Endnotes and sources
FBI Crime Data Explorer, "Documents & Downloads." Accessed February 6, 2023.
- 2021 and 2020 Crime in the United States Annual Reports
- Offenses Known to Law Enforcement
- 2021 NIBRS Estimation Tables
FBI Uniform Crime Reporting Program, "Offenses Known to Law Enforcement ." Accessed February 6, 2023.
Bureau of Justice Statistics, "National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS)." Accessed February 6, 2023.
US Census Bureau, "2021: ACS 5-Year Estimates Subject Tables." Accessed February 6, 2023.
US Census Bureau, "2021: ACS 5-Year Estimates Detailed Tables." Accessed February 6, 2023.
SafeWise, "2022 State of Safety survey." Accessed February 6, 2023.
Gun Violence Archive, "General Methodology." Accessed February 6, 2023.
Gun Violence Archive, "Past Summary Ledgers." Accessed January 3, 2023.
Gun Violence Archive, "Congress."
- 2022 totals: Accessed January 3, 2023.
- 2021 and 2020 totals: Accessed December 19, 2022.