Colorado’s 20 Safest Cities of 2020

Colorado safest cities badge

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 crime experience infographic; 6% violent crime, 25% property crime, 10% mass shooting

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.

See if you live in one of Colorado’s safest cities of 2020.

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.

Colorado crime stats infographic
Colorado's level of concern decreased 22% from 2019, despite higher statewide crime rates.

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.
Colorado crime stats infographic
Colorado crime stats infographic

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%.
Colorado crime stats infographic
Colorado crime stats infographic

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.
Colorado safest cities heat map showing population and crime score

The 20 safest cities in Colorado

VC = Violent Crime PC = Property Crime

Windsor, Colorado
#1
Windsor
(
+2
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    26,441
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $90,699
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    0.2, 0.2, 0.1
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    6.2, 11.4, 10.7
Milliken, Colorado
#2
Milliken
(
+29
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    7,238
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $77,840
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    0.4, 2.3, 0.5
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    4.8, 6.1, 6.3
Fort Lupton, Colorado
#3
Fort Lupton
(
+15
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    8,273
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $55,887
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    0.5, 1.1, 1.9
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    9.4, 11.3, 12.8
Carbondale, Colorado
#4
Carbondale
(
+31
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    6,882
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $68,217
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    1.0, 2.5, 2.1
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    8.3, 15.8, 11.0
Johnstown, Colorado
#5
Johnstown
(
-3
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    16,490
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $85,339
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    0.5, 0.2, 0.8
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    13.5, 10.3, 7.1
Erie, Colorado
#6
Erie
(
+1
)
  • Circle Population
    Population
    25,233
  • Circle Dollar
    Median Income
    $113,304
  • Circle Gun
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    1.0, 0.5, 0.5
  • Circle Property
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    10.2, 8.5, 6.1
Firestone, Colorado
#7
Firestone
(
+2
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    14,419
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $94,545
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    1.2, 0.7, 0.5
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    8.5, 8.9, 10.2
Castle Rock, Colorado
#8
Castle Rock
(
+5
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    64,526
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $101,122
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    0.6, 0.9, 0.9
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    15.0, 16.3, 15.4
Parker, Colorado
#9
Parker
(
+12
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    55,573
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $105,373
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    1.0, 1.5, 0.9
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    14.1, 15.0, 11.7
Estes Park, Colorado
#10
Estes Park
(
+28
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    6,399
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $53,025
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    2.2, 3.0, 0.9
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    7.3, 9.2, 11.4
Salida, Colorado
#11
Salida
(
+28
)
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    Population
    5,951
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $39,741
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    1.0, 0.9, 1.3
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    20.3, 30.3, 33.7
Steamboat Springs, Colorado
#12
Steamboat Springs
(
+13
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    13,100
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $63,393
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    1.3, 1.7, 2.5
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    20.2, 23.0, 23.9
Centennial, Colorado
#13
Centennial
(
NEW
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    111,646
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $100,770
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    1.8, Not available, Not available
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    17.5, Not available, Not available
Broomfield, Colorado
#14
Broomfield
(
+5
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    70,307
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $85,639
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    1.2, 1.2, 0.5
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    24.3, 26.3, 24.0
Fruita, Colorado
#15
Fruita
(
+12
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    13,390
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $55,286
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    2.2, 1.9, 1.2
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    16.2, 13.3, 14.3
Woodland Park, Colorado
#16
Woodland Park
(
+33
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    7,709
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $69,507
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    2.1, 2.4, 2.4
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    18.5, 24.4, 19.9
Littleton, Colorado
#17
Littleton
(
-3
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    48,632
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $71,315
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    0.9, 1.0, 1.0
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    32.1, 30.3, 27.4
Fort Collins, Colorado
#18
Fort Collins
(
+10
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    168,163
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $60,110
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    2.3, 2.2, 2.1
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    22.0, 25.4, 24.5
Lafayette, Colorado
#19
Lafayette
(
+11
)
  • Icon Population  Dark
    Population
    28,914
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $76,059
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    2.1, 2.3, 3.1
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    24.6, 24.6, 22.4
Eagle, Colorado
#20
Eagle
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    Population
    6,921
  • Icon Income  Dark
    Median Income
    $118,630
  • Icon Violent Crime  Dark
    VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    3.6, 1.5, 0.6
  • Icon Property Crime  Dark
    PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018
    12.1, 13.9, 8.2

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.

2020 Ranking

City

Population

Violent Crime (per 1,000)

Property Crime (per 1,000)

21

Golden

20,768

2.1

25.9

22

Loveland

78,192

2.6

22.4

23

Gunnison

6,627

3.2

19.8

24

Arvada

120,631

2.3

29.4

25

Brighton

41,613

2.7

27.3

26

Aspen

7,465

1.6

38.7

27

Wheat Ridge

31,452

2.4

32.8

28

Fountain

30,367

4

20.8

29

Cortez

8,738

3.2

27.4

30

Fort Morgan

11,267

3.4

26.6

31

Westminster

113,751

2.8

32.3

32

Thornton

139,697

2.7

33.3

33

Boulder

108,380

2.7

33.8

34

Craig

8,848

2.6

35.7

35

Rifle

9,711

4.1

23.8

36

Greeley

107,325

4

25.5

37

Longmont

95,534

4.3

27.1

38

Northglenn

39,383

3.7

33.1

39

Evans

20,744

5.2

20.4

40

Delta

8,819

2.2

47.1

41

Durango

18,717

4.3

35.3

42

Avon

6,565

6.4

18.3

43

Montrose

19,335

3.4

46.2

44

Glenwood Springs

10,022

3.5

47.2

45

Grand Junction

62,974

4.4

43.4

46

Colorado Springs

471,124

5.6

33.4

47

Englewood

35,029

2.4

61.1

48

Sterling

13,928

6.3

35

49

Trinidad

7,947

5.4

42.8

50

Commerce City

57,474

6.7

31.8

51

La Junta

6,867

5

47.8

52

Aurora

372,824

7.3

29.8

53

Canon City

16,557

5.7

45.7

54

Greenwood Village

15,989

5.9

45.5

55

Lone Tree

13,933

3.1

72.5

56

Denver

720,745

7.3

36.7

57

Federal Heights

12,929

6.7

42.8

58

Alamosa

9,955

5.6

55.4

59

Pueblo

111,756

9.9

55.8

60

Sheridan

6,159

8.4

88.2


Sources

FBI Uniform Crime Reporting, “2018 Crime in the United States
SafeWise, “2020 State of Safety
US Census Bureau, “American Fact Finder
Gun Violence Archive (GVA), “Mass Shootings Reports

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.”

Rebecca Edwards
Written by
Rebecca Edwards
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.
  • Andrew Greengard

    What about Boulder?

  • Mike Jones

    Where is Englewood?

  • Jay Allenby

    I am shocked that Aurora isn’t on this list.

    • Mike Jones

      It’s number 59 on the list