Don’t Leave Lewes! Here are the 10 Safest Towns in Delaware

Lewes Marina, Delaware | © Michele Dorsey Walfred/Flickr

If you go to sleep each night worried about your personal safety, a new report suggests you need to head south to the smaller towns of Sussex County to ensure a good night’s rest.

Beautiful and charming Lewes came out tops in the SafeWise Report on Delaware’s 10 Safest Cities, followed closely by nearby Milton.  The report by the security company assembled data from the 2016 FBI crime report statistics and population stats. 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.

Despite being home to one of the most violent cities in America, many towns like Lewes and Milton are increasing police and community efforts and are actually becoming safer.

The report says large cities like Wilmington skew the crime statistics for the state as a whole and give Delaware a bad reputation for crime that it doesn’t fully deserve. Close-knit communities like Lewes actually boast property crime rates 27% lower and violent crime rates 79% lower than national averages. Their rates went from 2.67 violent crimes per 1,000 people in 2015 to 0.98. Property crimes also fell, going from 25.73 per 1,000 people to 20.55.  See below for the 10 safest cities in the state.

The 10 Safest Cities in Delaware

  1. Lewes

Population: 3,065
Violent crimes per 1,000: 0.98
Property crimes per 1,000: 20.55
Total crime: 4.77% violent, 95.23% property

  1. Milton

Population: 2,875
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.04
Property crimes per 1,000: 11.13
Total crime: 9.34% violent, 90.66% property

  1. Clayton

Population: 3,165
Violent crimes per 1,000: 1.90
Property crimes per 1,000: 11.69
Total crime: 16.25% violent, 83.75% property

  1. Newark

Population: 34,297
Violent crimes per 1,000: 3.32
Property crimes per 1,000: 22.31
Total crime: 14.88% violent, 85.12% property

  1. Middletown

Population: 20,666
Violent crimes per 1,000: 3.39
Property crimes per 1,000: 24.19
Total crime: 14.01% violent, 85.99% property

  1. Selbyville

Population: 2,440
Violent crimes per 1,000: 3.69
Property crimes per 1,000: 31.97
Total crime: 11.54% violent, 88.46% property

  1. Camden

Population: 3,512
Violent crimes per 1,000: 3.99
Property crimes per 1,000: 55.81
Total crime: 7.15% violent, 92.85% property

  1. Elsmere

Population: 6,149
Violent crimes per 1,000: 4.55
Property crimes per 1,000: 24.56
Total crime: 18.53% violent, 81.47% property

  1. Millsboro

Population: 4,286
Violent crimes per 1,000: 4.67
Property crimes per 1,000: 41.76
Total crime: 11.18% violent, 88.82% property

  1. New Castle

Population: 5,392
Violent crimes per 1,000: 5.93
Property crimes per 1,000: 35.05
Total crime: 16.92% violent, 83.08% property

How SafeWise Chose the Safest Cities in Delaware

Their 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.

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