Just under half of the participants (48%) in our 2020 State of Safety survey said they’re highly concerned about safety on a daily basis. That’s two percentage points higher than the national average of 46%.
Kansas is most worried about mass shootings, and there were four in the state in 2019.
Rates for violent crime (4.4) and property crime (26.3) in Kansas are higher than nationwide rates of 3.7 and 22.0, respectively. Personal experience with property crime is also above the national average in the Sunflower State.
Violent Crime in Kansas: Fear vs. Reality
Being the victim of a mass shooting is the top violent crime concern in Kansas, but physical assault was named the crime most likely to happen. Mass shootings are traumatic events that leave long-lasting damage, but they are outlier events that don’t necessarily indicate the general safety of a city or state.
37% said they are most concerned about mass shootings, compared to 38% nationwide.
21% believe that a mass shooting is the most likely violent crime to occur—23% is the national average.
9% of respondents reported that they or someone they know has been personally affected by a mass shooting at some time in their life, versus 7% across the US.
There were 16 mass shootings in Kansas between 2014 and 2019, resulting in 29 deaths and 63 injured. For the same time period, there were 2,087 mass shooting incidents nationwide.
In 2019, there were four mass shootings in Kansas, with five deaths and 16 injured.
28% said they feel physical assault is the crime most likely to happen to them. That’s two percentage points higher than the national average of 26%.
Aggravated assault was the most common violent crime reported in the state, accounting for 70% of violent crime in the safest cities and 75% statewide.
Murder by a stranger, assault by a stranger and being robbed on the street each got 36% as the second most worrisome violent crimes in the state.
Property Crime in Kansas: Fear vs. Reality
Someone breaking in when residents aren’t at home was the most worrisome property crime in Kansas. Yet theft of digital property (like photos and files) is the crime considered the most likely to actually happen.
65% cited a break-in while away from home as their top property crime fear, compared to 62% across the country.
45% of Kansas respondents felt that having digital property stolen is the most likely property crime, versus 36% nationwide.
Burglary made up 12% of all property crime among the safest cities and 16% statewide.
26% of Kansas respondents have a home security system, landing two points above the national average of 24%.
33% reported using a firearm for protection, making it the most widely-used security measure in the Sunflower State. 28% of people nationwide use a firearm for protection.
31% don’t use any kind of security on their property, compared to 29% nationally.
Larceny-theft was the most common property crime in Kansas, accounting for 80% of all property crime in the safest cities and 73% statewide.
56% of respondents named property being stolen as a top concern (making it the third biggest concern), and 43% think it’s likely to happen.
A Closer Look at Kansas’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.
Hugoton is a brand-new addition, debuting on our list at number one.
40% of the cities improved their rank year over year, with Tonganoxie showing the largest improvement, climbing 27 spots to number four.
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.”
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. Learn more