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Minnesota’s 20 Safest Cities of 2020

Written by | Updated September 21, 2020
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We just released the 100 safest small towns in America for 2020 and one Minnesota town is recognized. Check out the full list to see which one made the cut.

The SafeWise Team is pleased to release the sixth annual Safest Cities report. Here are the 20 Safest Cities in Minnesota for 2020. See if your city made the list.

Minnesota crime experience infographic; 9% violent crime, 30% property crime, 7% mass shooting

Minnesota is in line with the majority of the country when it comes to how concerned people are about their safety on a daily basis. But those who call one of the state’s 20 safest cities home may be less worried thanks to crime rates that are below national averages.

Check out the full list of Minnesota’s safest cities of 2020. 

Our 2020 State of Safety study found that 45% of Minnesota residents express high concern about safety every day. That’s just one percentage point below the national average of 46%. 

Minnesota crime concern infographic
Minnesota's property crime rate decreased, but reported experience with property crime increase by 329%.

Experience with property crime made a huge leap year over year, jumping from 7% in 2019 to 30% this year. The national average is 26%. Despite that experiential increase, Minnesota’s overall property crime rate decreased from 22 incidents per 1,000 in 2019 to 19.9 this year—and it remains below the national rate (22.0) year over year. 

Those who reported experience with violent crime over the past 12 months increased from 6% to 9%, which is still far below the current national average of 12%. The state also came in with a violent crime rate that’s one point lower than the national average. Minnesota reported 2.2 violent crime incidents per 1,000, compared to 3.7 nationwide.

Violent Crime in Minnesota: Fear vs. Reality

The top violent crime concern in the North Star State is being robbed on the street, but the crime respondents feel is the most likely to happen is a mass shooting.

  • 29% reported the highest concern about being robbed on the street. That’s almost 10 points lower than the national average of 38%.  
  • Robbery accounted for 12% of all violent crime reported by the safest cities and 24% across the state.
  • The most common violent crime was aggravated assault, comprising 51% of the incidents reported among the safest cities and 55% across the state.
  • 24% named mass shooting the violent crime they feel is most likely to actually happen. That’s one point higher than the national average of 23%. 
  • As of July 15, there have been four mass shootings in Minnesota, claiming one life and injuring 25. All four happened in Minneapolis, and occurred after George Floyd died in police custody at the end of May.
  • There were 20 mass shooting incidents in Minnesota between 2014 and 2019, resulting in 14 deaths and 88 injured—two occurred in 2019.  
  • Nationwide, there were 2,087 mass shooting incidents during the same time period. So far in 2020, there have been 299 mass shootings in the US.
Minnesota crime concern infographic
Minnesota crime concern infographic

Property Crime in Minnesota: Fear vs. Reality

Break-ins are the biggest property crime concern in Minnesota, and having property stolen is the crime most people feel is likely to actually happen.

  • 51% are highly concerned about someone breaking in when no one is at home, compared to 58% nationwide. 
  • Burglary was the second most prevalent property crime, making up 14% of all property crime in the safest cities and across the state.
  • 35% think the property crime that’s most likely to happen is having property stolen. That’s just one point behind the national average of 36%.
  • Larceny-theft was the most common property crime, accounting for 81% of all incidents reported by the safest cities and 76% reported statewide. 
  • 17% of Minnesota participants use a security system to protect their home, versus 24% across the country. 
  • Firearms are the second most common security measure used in Minnesota, with 25% using firearms to protect their property. The national average is 28%.
  • 34% of Minnesota residents use no security measure to protect their property, compared to 29% nationwide. 
Minnesota crime concern infographic
Minnesota crime concern infographic

A Closer Look at Minnesota’s Safest Cities of 2020

For the purposes of this report, the terms “safest” and “dangerous” refer explicitly to crime rates as calculated from FBI crime data—no other characterization of any community is implied or intended.

  • The top three cities all made big jumps to land on top this year: Kasson moved up 53 spots, La Crescent rose 36, and Orono climbed 13. 
  • 80% of the cities improved in rank year over year.
  • Only three cities (15%) dropped in rank from 2019 to 2020.
  • Every city on the list had one or fewer violent crime incidents per 1,000. A full 90% reported fewer than one incident per 1,000.
  • Two cities reported only one violent crime each—Kasson and Lake City
  • Only one city reported any counts of murder in 2018.
  • All cities are below both state (19.9) and national (22.0) property crime rates, and no city reported more than 11.5 incidents per 1,000.
  • Kasson has the lowest property crime rate with 1.2 incidents per 1,000, and zero counts of burglary, which is the most feared property crime in the state. Cold Spring/Richmond also reported zero counts of burglary.
  • 65% of the cities held property crime to fewer than 100 total incidents each.
Minnesota safest cities heat map showing population and crime score

The 20 Safest Cities in Minnesota

VC = Violent Crime
PC = Property Crime

#1

Kasson

+53

Kasson, Minnesota
Population 6,444
Median Income $71,098
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.2, 1.1, 0.8
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 1.2, 12.5, 10.6

#2

La Crescent

+36

La Crescent, Minnesota
Population 5,012
Median Income $55,952
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.4, 1.0, 0.4
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 4.4, 7.3, 6.2

#3

Orono

+13

Orono, Minnesota
Population 20,225
Median Income $130,300
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.3, 0.6, 0.2
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 5.8, 6.1, 8.4

#4

Elko New Market

0

Elko New Market, Minnesota
Population 4,809
Median Income $118,750
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.4, 0.2, 0.0
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 4.6, 0.4, 2.7

#5

South Lake Minnetonka

+37

South Lake Minnetonka, Minnesota
Population 12,731
Median Income Not available
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.2, 0.9, 0.8
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 6.9, 9.2, 9.3

#6

Cold Spring/Richmond

-3

Cold Spring-Richmond, Minnesota
Population 5,572
Median Income $49,041
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.4, 0.2, 0.7
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 6.6, 8.3, 7.4

#7

Minnetrista

+14

Minnetrista, Minnesota
Population 10,357
Median Income $148,783
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.4, 0.6, 0.2
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 8.1, 11.9, 8.7

#8

Dayton

+7

Dayton, Minnesota
Population 5,970
Median Income $87,966
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.3, 0.5, 0.0
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 9.4, 11.8, 8.3

#9

Lake City

+11

Lake City, Minnesota
Population 5,116
Median Income $53,300
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.2, 0.6, 0.8
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 11.5, 8.9, 6.8

#10

Farmington

+7

Farmington, Minnesota
Population 23,355
Median Income $88,674
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.6, 0.6, 0.4
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 7.5, 9.1, 9.6

#11

Medina

+1

Medina, Minnesota
Population 6,721
Median Income $138,125
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.3, 0.5, 0.5
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 11.0, 10.5, 15.9

#12

Jordan

+43

Population 6,375
Median Income $66,194
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.6, 1.1, 1.1
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 7.1, 11.0, 8.1

#13

Lino Lakes

-3

Lino Lakes, Minnesota
Population 21,577
Median Income $107,438
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.6, 0.4, 0.5
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 8.4, 9.2, 9.9

#14

Rosemount

+5

Rosemount, Minnesota
Population 24,707
Median Income $94,341
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.6, 0.6, 1.0
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 7.6, 8.6, 8.1

#15

Lakeville

+10

Population 64,914
Median Income $102,943
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.6, 0.7, 0.7
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 8.2, 9.5, 10.0

#16

St. Joseph

+13

Population 7,212
Median Income $56,754
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.6, 0.7, 0.9
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 9.6, 8.7, 8.1

#17

Corcoran

+7

Population 5,988
Median Income $102,708
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.7, 0.7, 0.2
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 8.7, 6.6, 5.0

#18

Big Lake

-16

Big Lake, Minnesota
Population 11,036
Median Income $73,500
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 1.0, 0.1, 1.4
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 4.8, 5.5, 7.3

#19

Chaska

+16

Population 26,962
Median Income $81,938
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.8, 0.8, 0.6
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 8.4, 9.7, 11.3

#20

Plymouth

+13

Plymouth, Minnesota
Population 79,559
Median Income $91,867
VC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 0.6, 0.8, 0.6
PC Rate 2020, 2019, 2018 11.4, 12.3, 13.1

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 RankingCityPopulationViolent Crime (per 1,000)Property Crime (per 1,000)
21West Hennepin5,6630.97.6
22Belle Plaine7,1890.710.6
23Stillwater19,4670.97.8
24New Prague7,8840.611.5
25Chisholm4,9080.89.8
26East Grand Forks8,6320.810.1
27Edina52,5440.415.3
28New Ulm13,2020.712.3
29Eden Prairie64,9170.613.4
30Minnetonka53,5730.515.1
31Montevideo5,1010.812.2
32Woodbury70,9000.713.3
33Champlin25,30419.2
34Wyoming7,9001.18
35Grand Rapids11,2970.812.8
36Maple Grove72,5020.615.4
37Cottage Grove37,1020.714.7
38Sartell18,0140.616.7
39Ramsey27,023112.9
40Glencoe5,4801.111.9
41Sauk Rapids13,8530.420.4
42Centennial Lakes11,062113.4
43International Falls5,9331.39.8
44Northfield20,5351.49.7
45New Hope21,1680.718.7
46Rogers13,2570.817.8
47St. Peter12,0121.212.7
48Savage32,0291.113.5
49North Mankato13,7941.410.4
50Isanti5,7870.719.2
51Cloquet11,911115.2
52Litchfield6,6151.212.7
53Becker4,8801.84.9
54Owatonna25,829117
55Eagan66,9810.919.2
56Waseca8,9180.821.3
57Wayzata6,5820.919.8
58St. Francis7,7281.315.3
59Golden Valley21,688118.9
60Elk River24,7241.217.4
61St. Paul Park5,4091.118.5
62North St. Paul12,5881.217.5
63Buffalo16,304119.4
64Baxter8,3721.119.1
65Apple Valley52,9221.218.1
66Morris5,3001.99.4
67Mendota Heights11,3811.418.2
68Sauk Centre4,3891.813.9
69Little Falls8,6831.419.7
70Coon Rapids62,8181.321
71North Branch10,5111.123.4
72Blaine65,649126
73New Brighton22,9781.124.5
74Windom4,4011.815.5
75Hopkins18,8381.717.7
76Crystal23,3101.520.9
77Fairmont10,0531.224.3
78Prior Lake26,9251.521.3
79Oakdale28,1781.323.5
80Moorhead43,6571.423.5
81Marshall13,7131.818.2
82Hastings22,7991.818.1
83Lakes Area9,6792.115.5
84Worthington13,3092.68.3
85Anoka17,5741.522.4
86Hutchinson13,862216.4
87Shakopee41,4241.819.6
88St. Louis Park49,5951.424.7
89Winona26,8401.622.9
90White Bear Lake26,1871.426.9
91Albert Lea17,6551.526.4
92Rochester117,0371.920.8
93Thief River Falls8,8651.823.4
94Hibbing15,9982.811.4
95Cambridge8,905134.8
96Inver Grove Heights35,5922.515.7
97St. Anthony9,2052.122.4
98Richfield36,3002.221.2
99Burnsville61,5921.926.2
100Princeton4,6661.335.1
101Crookston7,7792.420.4
102South St. Paul20,2602.324.9
103Bloomington86,2791.930
104Oak Park Heights4,9911.239.3
105Detroit Lakes9,289229.1
106Austin24,9352.621.8
107Mounds View13,2351.733.9
108Hermantown9,525143.3
109Red Wing16,4052.426
110Columbia Heights21,1192.723.9
111Robbinsdale14,6293.315.9
112Faribault23,8063.217.8
113Willmar19,6352.825.4
114Fergus Falls13,8392.235.3
115Dilworth4,4741.346.5
116Redwood Falls4,952332.3
117Maplewood41,3392.245
118Fridley27,943336.3
119Mankato42,6063.333.3
120Alexandria13,7593.728.3
121Brooklyn Park81,2633.730.3
122Roseville36,7012.349.8
123Brooklyn Center31,1283.834.2
124St. Cloud68,2823.837.7
125Virginia8,4584.134.6
126Duluth86,0483.642.9
127Brainerd13,4044.633.8
128West St. Paul19,7983.748.5
129Spring Lake Park6,5154.144.7
130St. Paul309,7566.332.5
131Bemidji15,5285.170.5
132Minneapolis428,2617.939.1
133Waite Park7,5123.9100.1

Find the Safest Cities in Each State

Click on the state image below to check out the safest cities for each state.

Sources

FBI Uniform Crime Reporting, “2018 Crime in the United States
SafeWise, “2020 State of Safety
US Census Bureau, “American Fact Finder
BestPlaces, “Find a Place Search Tool

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.”

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

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  • Jessica Roskosh-Gunter

    I don’t see Ely on the list.

  • Jessica Roskosh-Gunter

    If we are below the threshold for population or have no crime data submitted to the FBI, wouldn’t we be safest city? Lol

  • Jonald Blip

    I noticed that you have cities in Minnesota “ranked.” The FBI doesn’t rank them. So, you decided to make up your own ranking system? That’s impressive!