The 40 Safest Cities in Georgia – 2015
The most recent FBI Crime Report reveals the Peach State reported 3.59 incidents of violent crime and 33.46 incidents of property crime per 1,000 residents. This represents an impressive seven percent overall decrease in crime since the FBI’s previous statistics were released.
What’s even more remarkable is that the safest cities in Georgia boast an average violent crime rate of just 1.86 per 1,000 residents, which is roughly half the national average, and a property crime rate that’s nearly 30 percent less than most U.S. cities. Additionally, one-third of Georgia’s safest cities reported less than one incident of violent crime per 1,000 residents, and 80 percent (or 32 of the 40 cities on our list) reported no murders.
How We Chose the Safest Cities in Georgia
We created our 40 safest cities in Georgia list by analyzing the most recent FBI Crime Report data of cities with 4,000 or more residents in 2013. Next, we examined the number of violent crimes (murder, robbery, forcible rape, and aggravated assault) as well as property crimes (burglary, arson, motor vehicle theft, and larceny-theft) in each city. Then, we calculated how often these crimes were reported per 1,000 people.
Cities that didn’t report data to the FBI, as well as those that reported incomplete data, were removed from eligibility. So, if there’s a city you think is safe but it’s not on our list, this could be the reason why.
1. Johns Creek
With a police department that offers citizens innovative safety programs like PACT (Police and Community Together) and the SHIELD Business Watch program, it’s no wonder Johns Creek is the safest city in the Peach State, despite being one of its most populated. We applaud the fact that Johns Creek’s crime rate is 75 percent less than the national average.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: .43
Property Crimes per 1,000: 7.36
Image: Uploaded by Mbrooks; Public Domain
2. Holly Springs
Holly Springs earns our admiration for taking a pioneering approach to crime fighting with its T.R.A.C.E. Program, which builds community, government, and police partnerships that address the causes of crime and promotes individual responsibility. That might be why the second safest city on our list reported just four violent crimes to the FBI and boasts a property crime rate that’s 66 percent lower than the national average.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: .40
Property Crimes per 1,000: 9.99
The Summerville Police Department understands the importance of building trust with the community’s youngest citizens. Not only do department members raise money for children’s programs and sponsor “fun days” at local parks, they also take underprivileged children shopping during the holidays. Positive relationships between police and youth could be one reason the city reported zero incidents of violent crime to the FBI.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: .00
Property Crimes per 1,000: 11.24
Milton was incorporated less than 10 years ago, but it’s already making a name for itself as a safe place to live and work. In fact, since 2012, the number of robberies in Milton fell from six to just one. Moreover, no murders, vehicle thefts, or arsons were reported to law enforcement in 2013.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: .22
Property Crimes per 1,000: 11.72
5. Peachtree City
Low crime is one reason Peachtree City consistently earns praise as a great place to raise kids — and the police department intends to keep it that way. To that end, the department is seeking Gold Standard accreditation through the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies. This prestigious accreditation will hold the department to extremely high standards and help ensure law enforcement officers have the resources they need to fight crime.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: .66
Property Crimes per 1,000: 12.65
From parades and pageants to Christmas on the Square, the small town of Adairsville is big on community events that foster a sense of unity among citizens. Tight-knit communities often enjoy low crime rates, so we weren’t surprised to discover Adairsville reported 60 percent less property crime than the typical American city.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: .77
Property Crimes per 1,000: 11.10
The Folkston Police Department understands that no law enforcement agency can be fully effective without the help of the citizens it serves. That’s why the department encourages residents to voice their questions and concerns by, among other things, emailing the police chief. Open communication could be one reason Folkston reported a nominal nine violent crimes to the FBI in 2013.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 1.59
Property Crimes per 1,000: 12.93
Tyrone’s police chief advocates a policing philosophy that’s based on transparency. To that end, the department posts monthly crime activity reports and statistics online. We were impressed to find that the most recentdepartmental reports show a marked decrease in crime. Furthermore, according to the FBI Crime Report, Tyrone reported just five violent crimes.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: .71
Property Crimes per 1,000: 14.15
Image: Town of Tyrone Facebook page
9. Flowery Branch
Flowery Branch is a Certified City of Ethics, which means its leaders are dedicated to building trust between citizens and the local government — including the police department. A positive citizen-police relationship could be why Flowery Branch residents reported just one violent crime to law enforcement.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: .16
Property Crimes per 1,000: 15.53
McRae is close to big city amenities yet retains a distinctive small-town appealthat includes decidedly low crime rates. In fact, McRae’s crime rate is half that of most U.S. cities, and one-third less than the average safe city on our list.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 3.04
Property Crimes per 1,000: 12.71
There is a lot going on at the Jefferson Police Department. Not only has the department been awarded a $10,000 public safety partnership grant from the Governor’s Office of Highway Safety, it also recently launched a new website. Through the site, citizens can request extra patrols through their neighborhoods, submit a concern, or search for a police report, all of which exemplify community involvement in safety.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 1.14
Property Crimes per 1,000: 15.46
Image: Uploaded by Ichabod; Public Domain
Low crime and a plethora of community events and programs help the growing city of Hampton retain its small-town charm. Since we last reported on Hampton, its already-enviable low violent crime rate has gone down even further, and the most recent FBI Crime Report reveals Hampton experienced no murders or rapes.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 1.26
Property Crimes per 1,000: 15.84
One reason Kennesaw boasts a remarkably low crime rate despite its rapid growth could be the police department’s unique policing philosophy namedT.R.A.C.K. The acronym stands for the core values of the program, which are teamwork, results, accountability, communication, Kennesaw, and its goal is to take proactive measures to keep incidents of crime in Kennesaw to a minimum.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 1.08
Property Crimes per 1,000: 16.08
The Grovetown Department of Public Safety earns our kudos for being named aGeorgia Certified Law Enforcement Agency, which means it exemplifies the highest level of standards and professionalism as outlined by the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police. And the entire Grovetown community deserves commendation for lowering crime over the course of the year. The community not only moved up seven places on our safest cities of Georgia list since 2012, it also cut the rate of violent crimes in half.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: .31
Property Crimes per 1,000: 17.01
The Braselton Police Department goes above and beyond when it comes tocommunity service. In addition to patrolling the streets, officers speak at HOA meetings, help establish Neighborhood Watch programs, provide safety and security tips for business ownders, and check on elderly members of the community. These initiatives help citizens and law enforcement officers get to know one another, which builds relationships that keep crime at bay.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 1.63
Property Crimes per 1,000: 15.93
The Canton Police Department helps residents stay abreast of important issues through its state-of-the-art website. Among other things, the website allows citizens to register for safety and security notifications and view real-time crime statistics at a city or neighborhood level. Keeping locals informed and involved in their community is probably one reason Canton’s crime rate is 40 percent lower than most cities in the U.S.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: .95
Property Crimes per 1,000: 16.89
Perry has a history of developing and implementing a number of community programs, like the Citizens Police Academy, and it appears as though they’re paying off. We were wowed to see Perry moved up six places since it appeared on our last safe city list, and equally impressed that its crime rate is 40 percent less than most communities across America.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 2.33
Property Crimes per 1,000: 16.73
18. Port Wentworth
Port Wentworth has nearly doubled in population over the past 15 years, but thanks in part to modern crime tracking tools like CrimeReports, citizens are aware of what’s going on around them and that helps keep crime rates low. CrimeReports not only helps increase public awareness of local crime issues, it also encourages cooperation between citizens and law enforcement officers.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 1.26
Property Crimes per 1,000: 18.62
We congratulate the Alpharetta Department of Public Safety for being named the “2015 Agency of the Year” by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s National Academy Associates. As if that’s not impressive enough, the community reported less than one incident of violent crime per 1,000 residents, which is remarkable for a city of nearly 65,000.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: .74
Property Crimes per 1,000: 19.36
20 Richmond Hill
The Richmond Hill Police Department believes an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, so its officers routinely deliver personal, business, and neighborhood crime presentations. The city’s proactive approach to crime could be why Richmond Hill enjoys a crime rate that’s 33 percent less than most communities across the nation, and why it moved up seven places on our safe cities list since last year.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: .92
Property Crimes per 1,000: 20.11
There’s a lot to love about Commerce. In addition to offering a progressive school district, a bustling business environment, and plenty of opportunities for recreation, Commerce is also a safe place to call home. The most recent FBI Crime Report states the community reported no murders, rapes, or arsons.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 3.07
Property Crimes per 1,000: 17.76
The Jackson Police Department believes in “protecting by serving,” and thewealth of special services it provides supports that claim. From escorting business owners to the bank to checking in on seniors, we salute the 13 sworn member of the Jackson Police Department for their dedication to service. We also congratulate the community for moving up 19 positions on our safe cities list since last year.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 4.04
Property Crimes per 1,000: 19.23
Roswell’s Crime Free Housing Program is an inventive crime prevention solution designed to reduce illegal activity at rental properties. The program is based on a partnership between law enforcement officers, property owners, and managers, who work hand-in-hand to fight crime. It’s just one of a handful of community-based initiatives that keep the crime rate in Roswell far below the national average.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 1.50
Property Crimes per 1,000: 22.09
Woodstock has been named as one of the fastest growing suburbs in America, but thankfully crime hasn’t followed suit. One reason may be due to organizations like The Woodstock Public Safety Foundation, which helps cultivate partnerships between citizens and the police and fire departments to ensure the community remains a safe place to live, work, and play.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: .78
Property Crimes per 1,000: 23.28
The Suwanee Police Department is one of only a few Gwinnett County law enforcement agencies to earn certification from the Georgia Association of Chiefs of Police, and the many community-based programs helped the city achieve an exceptionally low rate of crime. Less than one incident of violent crime was reported per 1,000 residents in 2013.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: .90
Property Crimes per 1,000: 23.64
The Duluth Police Department takes pride in creating partnerships within the community that enhance communication between citizens and officers. For example, its Citizen’s Police Academy gives locals the chance to learn the ins and outs of community-oriented policing. The strength of Duluth’s citizen-police partnerships may contribute to its remarkably low violent crime rate.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 1.48
Property Crimes per 1,000: 23.10
Image: Kobac; CC0
Cairo’s robust economic and educational developments, as well as its significance as the county seat of Grady County, are just a few reasons it’s a desirable place to live. Low crime is another. We were delighted to see that Cairo moved up 16 places from last year’s list and reported just 43 burglaries to the FBI in 2013.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 2.93
Property Crimes per 1,000: 22.48
A skilled police department gives citizens a sense of security, so we congratulate the officers of the Dawson Police Department for their dedication to training. Officers routinely hone their communication and first responder skills throughpractical scenarios and become more proficient at handling dangerous situations. Dawson is the only city on our list to report no larceny-thefts, no motor vehicle thefts, and no arsons.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 6.89
Property Crimes per 1,000: 19.53
Not only is the Pooler Police Department a State Certified Agency, which means it adheres to rigorous standards and routinely has its policies and practices audited, it also boasts a modern website that provides valuable information on a number of safety and security topics. These are probably a few of the reasons Pooler reported a mere 35 violent crimes to the FBI. That’s a particularly low number for a city of more than 21,000 residents.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 1.66
Property Crimes per 1,000: 26.77
From ideas about neighborhood enhancements to thoughts about crime, Waynesboro’s Community Voice program gives residents the opportunity to communicate with leaders concerning a variety of quality-of-life issues. Open dialogue like this is one way Waynesboro bands together to address community needs — and could be why crime rates remain low.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 5.52
Property Crimes per 1,000: 23.13
Image: Blastoids; CC BY-SA 3.0
31. Sandy Springs
Since Sandy Springs incorporated 10 years ago, the community has enjoyed a noteworthy reduction in crime. For example, the number of burglaries has dropped nearly 35 percent over the decade. This could be attributed to the many citizen safety training opportunities and education classes the Sandy Springs Police Department hosts each year.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 1.83
Property Crimes per 1,000: 27.07
Image: Maksim Sundukov; CC BY-SA 3.0
On top of friendly neighbors and a slew of community events, Glennville locals enjoy a cost of living that’s 20 percent lower than the national average. They also benefit from low crime rates. In 2013, Glennville reported no murders, no rapes, and a nominal 30 burglaries to the FBI.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 2.87
Property Crimes per 1,000: 26.49
Bremen’s citizens aren’t reluctant to get involved in solving community problems. For example, when teenage drug use became a concern, locals formed BRIDGE, Bringing Rescue into Drug Gripped Environment. It’s community participation like this that helps keep Bremen’s violent crime rate to less than half the national average.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 1.77
Property Crimes per 1,000: 27.89
Loganville is the kind of place where neighbors look out for one another. It’s also a community that supports emergency service personnel by participating in groups like the Community Emergency Response Team and the Medical Reserve Corps. These programs are impressive, as is the fact that Loganville reported only 16 violent crimes to the FBI. That’s quite an achievement for a community of nearly 11,000.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 1.49
Property Crimes per 1,000: 28.41
The city of Euharlee is charming, friendly, and safe. In fact, Euharlee residents can brag that their hometown has one of the lowest rates of violent crime of all the safe cities in Georgia. This is an especially impressive accomplishment considering the city’s population increased by more than 30 percent over the last decade.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: .24
Property Crimes per 1,000: 30.56
Ranking as the 48th safest city in Georgia last year, Lawrenceville moved up an impressive 12 places on this year’s list. One reason for the jump may be due to the Lawrenceville Police Department’s use of modern tools like CrimeReports, which keeps residents informed about crime trends. Whatever the reason, the citizens, leaders, and law enforcement officers in Lawrenceville can be proud of their city’s accomplishments.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 2.17
Property Crimes per 1,000: 29.21
The officers of the Byron Police Department get to know the youth of their community though programs and classes like the PRIDE Teen Driving Class. Hands-on community policing efforts like this help build trust and respect between teens and police, and that can go a long way toward keeping crime under control.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 1.67
Property Crimes per 1,000: 31.43
A comparatively low cost of living, great schools, and extensive children’s recreation programs are a few reasons Fayetteville is noted as one of the best Atlanta suburbs for families. Safe streets is another. In fact, the violent crime rate in Fayetteville is half the national average.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 1.85
Property Crimes per 1,000: 31.64
Kingsland is a tight-knit community that’s growing steadily, but its police department isn’t having any trouble keeping pace. In fact, since we last reported on Kingsland, it moved up seven places on our safest cities of Georgia list.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 5.12
Property Crimes per 1,000: 28.55
40. St. Marys
The law enforcement officers of the St. Mary’s Police Department initiated over 17,000 service actions last year. Proactive policing like this is one reason why a recent report praised the St. Mary’s Police Department for doing a “commendable job” of keeping crime rates low.
Violent Crimes per 1,000: 4.23
Property Crimes per 1,000: 29.49
Whether you live in Georgia or you’re thinking of moving there, the safety and security information in our Georgia Safety Directory may be helpful.