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Fort Lupton, Tri-Towns among top-ranking communities in SafeWise’s Colorado study

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One-third of top 30 listed from Weld County

By Jeremy Johnson

WELD COUNTY — Just months after a real estate website declared Firestone the second-safest community in Colorado, an online security firm has released a list of the 30 safest communities in the state that includes the Tri-Towns, Fort Lupton and six other Weld County communities.

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In a recent list released by SafeWise, a Salt Lake City-based online firm offering comparison shopping for home security systems, one-third of the “cities” deemed the safest in the state were located, at least partially, in Weld County.

“If you’re planning a move to Colorado, you’re likely seeking somewhere with community togetherness, a pleasant atmosphere and, most importantly, somewhere safe to call home,” author Carolyn Heneghan wrote in the Aug. 25 article. “We’ve made it easier for you to know some of the safest places in the state.”

And while Firestone fell to No. 15 on this particular list, another of the Tri-Town communities, Dacono, came in at No. 3. Dacono and Firestone were with good Weld County company, and cities from the largest county in the state rounding out the list included Eaton (No. 2), Erie (No. 9), Fort Lupton (No. 12), Johnstown (No. 13), Mead (No. 17), Windsor (No. 20), Berthoud (No. 22) and the last of the Tri-Town trifecta, Frederick (No. 23).

According to a press release, SafeWise compiled the list using Federal Bureau of Investigation crime report statistics from 2012 and applied that information to only those municipalities with more than 2,000 residents. (Despite the list’s title, “30 Safest Cities in Colorado,” not all the places listed are technically considered cities.) Data from 2013 Colorado Bureau of Investigation was released earlier this summer and showed most of Weld County’s communities as continuing to buck trends of otherwise increasing crime reports across the state. 

Several law enforcement officials attributed the increased safety of their communities to programs that involve citizens and create community awareness. 

For instance, many southern Weld County communities recently took part in the National Association of Town Watch’s National Night Out event, which promotes crime prevention through police and community partnerships and neighborhood watch groups. According to SafeWise, Frederick’s record of no murders or arsons in 2012 is “influenced by residents’ and the police’s participation in community safety programs like National Night Out.”

 

By the numbers

In compiling the list, SafeWise split FBI and CBI crime data into two categories: violent crimes (murder, forcible rape, robbery and aggravated assault); and property crimes (burglary, larceny, motor vehicle theft and arson).

According to the report, Dacono’s ranking was largely due to it having “one of the best safety records in the state, including no murders, robberies, arsons or motor vehicle thefts reported in 2012.” However, Dacono’s violent crime ratio (1.16 per 1,000 residents) was the highest of any of the Weld County entries on the list, followed by Fort Lupton (1.05 per 1,000). That specific information was not included for Windsor, which is the largest of the Weld County municipalities to make the list. Frederick, on the other hand, had the lowest average violent crimes of any of the four local municipalities at 0.33 per 1,000 residents, followed closely by Firestone (0.38 per).

Dacono was head and shoulders above the rest of the local municipalities and the county as a whole in property crimes, with a miniscule 0.93 reported in 2012 per 1,000 residents. Fort Lupton recorded 7.18 property crimes per 1,000 residents, followed by Firestone (9.21) and Frederick (12.55).

Eaton, showing why it earned a No. 2-ranking behind only Buena Vista, had the lowest total violent and property crimes per population, with only .88 violent crimes and .44 property crimes per 1,000 residents.

 

Contact Staff Writer Jeremy Johnson at 303-659-2522, ext. 217, or jjohnson@metrowestnewspapers.com.