The SafeWise Team is pleased to release the sixth annual Safest Cities report. Here are the 20 Safest Cities in Colorado for 2020. See if your city made the list.
Colorado’s 20 Safest Cities of 2020
See how the coronavirus is impacting crime in Colorado and around the US. Read our coronavirus crime update for details about how police are changing tactics to battle the virus.
People in the Centennial State are less concerned about their safety than residents of most other states. With 80% of Colorado’s safest cities improving in rank year over year, it’s easy to see why.
Colorado respondents to our 2020 State of Safety survey reported about 15% lower concern about safety on a daily basis than the national average. They also reported half as much personal experience with violent crime in the past year.
Crime rates across the state saw fluctuations, with violent crime slightly increasing year over year (3.7 to 4.0) and property crime seeing a decrease (27.1 to 26.7). Despite that slight bump in violent crime statewide, all the safest cities were below both state and national violent crime rates.
Violent crime in Colorado: Fear vs. reality
Although Colorado shows lower levels of worry about security overall, it has slightly higher concern for specific violent crimes. This could be due to the slight rise of violent crime across the state.
- 42% of survey respondents showed highest concern about being robbed on the street. The national average is 38%.
- Robbery accounted for 17% of all violent crime in the state in 2018, and 12% of all violent crimes reported among the safest cities.
- Colorado named what they perceive to be the three most likely violent crimes: robbery (24%), physical assault (21%), and mass shooting (17%).
- The most common violent crime in the state was aggravated assault, accounting for 64% of all violent crime reported and 69% of the violent crimes in the safest cities.
- Colorado’s concern about assault is slightly lower than national averages—38% versus 40% across the US.
- Colorado reports less personal experience with violent crime. Just 6% had an experience in the past year, compared to 12% nationally. That’s the same number as reported last year.
Property crime in Colorado: Fear vs. reality
Colorado may be slightly less concerned about property crime, but that doesn’t mean its residents aren’t proactive when it comes to security. Break-ins are the top concern, and more Coloradoans use home security systems than the national average of 24%.
- 60% named someone breaking in when they’re not home as the primary property crime worry, compared to 62% nationwide.
- Burglary accounted for 14% of all property crime in Colorado, and 12% among the safest cities.
- More than 30% of participants said they have a home security system, 30% have security cameras, and 40% use a dog or other guard animal.
- 39% of respondents thought theft of digital property is the most likely property crime—that’s three percentage points higher than the national average.
- Last year, digital security tied with property crime as the top safety concern in the state (64% each).
- Larceny-theft is the most prevalent property crime in the state, claiming 72% of all property crime reports.
- More people experienced property crime this year—25% compared to 21% in 2019. The national average is 26%.
A closer look at Colorado’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.
- Windsor moved from third place last year to become the safest city in Colorado for 2020.
- Sixteen cities (80%) improved their rank year over year.
- The biggest increase was Woodland Park, rising 33 spots this year, followed by Carbondale jumping 31, and Milliken moving 29 spots to become the second-safest city in the state.
- Centennial joins the list for the first time this year as the 13th safest city.
- All cities came in below the Colorado violent crime rate (4.0) and the national rate (3.7).
- 95% of the cities had fewer than three violent crime incidents per 1,000 people.
- There were only seven murders among the safest cities, and 85% reported none.
- 95% of the cities are below the state property crime rate (26.7) and 80% are below the national rate (22).
- Milliken had the lowest total number of property crimes at 35 (4.8 rate), but Windsor still won the top spot thanks to a slightly lower violent crime rate.
- Littleton has the highest property crime rate at 32.1—about six percentage points above the state average.
How we determined the safest cities
Learn how we identified the safest cities on our methodology page.
How to make a safe home anywhere
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 your home security options, check out SafeWise’s picks for Best Home Security Systems.
Didn't find your city in the top 20?
We calculated crime rates for every city in the state that met our population threshold, which is based on the median population of the state. See how the remaining cities ranked in the list below.
NOTE: If you don’t see your city on the list, it means that it was below the population threshold or didn’t submit a complete crime report to the FBI in 2018.
Violent Crime (per 1,000)
Property Crime (per 1,000)
Mass Shooting Definition:
SafeWise uses the GVA definition of a mass shooting: “If four or more people are shot or killed in a single incident, not involving the shooter, that incident is categorized as a mass shooting based purely on that numerical threshold.”