Oregon’s 20 Safest Cities of 2018

Jun 4, 2018 |

Residents of Oregon are 34% less likely to find themselves the victim of violent crime compared to the average American, according to the latest FBI crime report. Zoom in on individual towns like Beaverton and Sherwood and that number swells to 70% and 85%, respectively.

These findings, published in the latest FBI crime report, were quickly followed by a study published in the Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization suggesting that cannabis legalization might have something to do with Oregon’s peaceful disposition. Based on 2013 and 2014 crime data from both Oregon and Washington, researchers identified a positive correlation between legalized marijuana and a “significant reduction in rapes and property crimes.”

Further research is needed to codify the relationship, but the Italian authors were quick to point out reasons why legalizing the drug could be driving this decline. Chief among them were the reallocation of law enforcement resources away from marijuana-related crimes, as well as the likely substitution of cannabis for “violence-inducing substances such as alcohol, cocaine, and amphetamines.”

It’s worth noting, however, that several years after Oregon’s decision to legalize marijuana, the state’s property crime rate remains frustratingly high at 22% higher than the national average. State police face a particularly uphill battle in many rural regions, including the western parts of Lane County. Sparse populations spread out over great distances mean deputies will often show up long after a call is made and property crime rates are difficult to track.      

Regardless of where you live in Oregon, explore all of the safety resources available to you in our Oregon Safety Directory.

The 20 Safest Cities in Oregon

1. Sherwood
Population: 19,486
Violent crimes per 1,000: 0.67
Property crimes per 1,000: 11.29
Total crime: 5.91% violent, 94.09% property

2. Sandy
Population: 10,855
Violent crimes per 1,000: 0.74
Property crimes per 1,000: 17.50
Total crime: 4.21% violent, 95.79% property

3. Lake Oswego
Population: 38,860
Violent crimes per 1,000: 0.80
Property crimes per 1,000: 11.48
Total crime: 6.95% violent, 93.05% property

4. Albany
Population: 52,544
Violent crimes per 1,000: 0.82
Property crimes per 1,000: 28.78
Total crime: 2.84% violent, 97.16% property

5. Silverton
Population: 9,860
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.01
Property crimes per 1,000: 19.47
Total crime: 5.21% violent, 94.79% property

6. Bend
Population: 89,244
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.08
Property crimes per 1,000: 22.52
Total crime: 4.78% violent, 95.22% property

7. Canby
Population: 17,395
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.21
Property crimes per 1,000: 10.29
Total crime: 11.73% violent, 88.27% property

8. Newberg-Dundee
Population: 26,105
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.26
Property crimes per 1,000: 16.97
Total crime: 7.45% violent, 92.55% property

9. The Dalles
Population: 15,413
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.30
Property crimes per 1,000: 31.53
Total crime: 4.12% violent, 95.88% property

10. Corvallis
Population: 56,061
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.34
Property crimes per 1,000: 27.77
Total crime: 4.82% violent, 95.18% property

11. Beaverton
Population: 97,907
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.36
Property crimes per 1,000: 14.33
Total crime: 9.48% violent, 90.52% property

12. Monmouth
Population: 10,131
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.38
Property crimes per 1,000: 19.64
Total crime: 7.04% violent, 92.96% property

13. Milwaukie
Population: 20,935
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.39
Property crimes per 1,000: 21.26
Total crime: 6.52% violent, 93.48% property

14. Gladstone
Population: 12,083
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.41
Property crimes per 1,000: 25.49
Total crime: 5.52% violent, 94.48% property

15. La Grande
Population: 13,071
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.61
Property crimes per 1,000: 27.62
Total crime: 5.82% violent, 94.18% property

16. McMinnville
Population: 34,242
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.64
Property crimes per 1,000: 24.15
Total crime: 6.77% violent, 93.23% property

17. Astoria
Population: 9,655
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.66
Property crimes per 1,000: 46.61
Total crime: 3.56% violent, 96.44% property

18. Keizer
Population: 38,165
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.73
Property crimes per 1,000: 20.20
Total crime: 8.56% violent, 91.44% property

19. Dallas
Population: 15,411
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.75
Property crimes per 1,000: 19.73
Total crime: 8.88% violent, 91.12% property

20. Central Point
Population: 18,161
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.82
Property crimes per 1,000: 28.41
Total crime: 6.40% violent, 93.60% property

How We Chose the Safest Cities in Oregon

To identify the twenty safest cities in Oregon, we reviewed the 2016 FBI crime report statistics and population data. Cities that fell below identified population thresholds or that failed to submit a complete crime report to the FBI were excluded from the ranking system.

Our evaluation is based on the number of reported violent crimes (aggravated assault, murder, rape, and robbery) in each city. If there was a tie, we also factored in the number of property crimes (burglary, arson, larceny-theft, and motor vehicle theft). To level the playing field, we calculated the rate of crimes per 1,000 people in each city. This makes it easier to directly compare the likelihood of these crimes occurring in cities with vastly different populations.

Learn more about how we rank our Safest Cities reports.

How to Make a Safe Home Anywhere

Wherever you live, feeling safe in your home can bring greater peace of mind and happiness. 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 the home security options available to you, check out SafeWise’s picks for  Best Home Security Systems of 2018.

If you would like to contact a SafeWise Safest Cities Analyst, please email info@safewise.com.

Written by Tamarra Kemsley

Tamarra graduated with a BA in communications in 2012 and with an MA in Islam and the Middle East from Jerusalem's Hebrew University in 2015. You can follow her on Twitter @tamarranicole. Learn more

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