The lighter side of real estate

These Are The 10 Safest Places In Kentucky

If you’re planning a move to the Blue Grass State, you’ll want to see this list of Kentucky’s 10 safest places.

Natalie Grigson

Staff Writer

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When it comes to finding that perfect place to live, we know full well here at the Movoto Real Estate Blog how important the area’s safety is—after all, we do sell houses for a living. Well, that, and write awesome articles like this one.

But back to that safety thing. Last year, we revealed the 10 safest places in each state across the nation, which was all well and good then, but as you know, things can change in a year, and according to the 2013 FBI Uniform Crime Report, crime is certainly one of them.

So once again, we’re taking a look at the safest places in the U.S. Today, we’re looking at you, Kentucky, where, according to our analysis, the safest place was Fort Thomas.

Here are the 10 safest places in Kentucky, 2015 style:

1. City of Fort Thomas
2. City of Madisonville
3. City of Lawrenceburg
4. City of Bardstown
5. City of Berea
6. City of Jeffersontown
7. City of Glasgow
8. City of Shelbyville
9. City of Independence
10. City of Elizabethtown

If you saw our list from last year, you’re sure to see several repeat offenders (a good thing in this case!). To find out why some of the usual suspects made the list again, and why we’re seeing some new places, like Bardstown, keep reading.

Our Methodology

Just recently, the FBI released its 2013 Uniform Crime Report. With these new numbers we set out to research each place in Kentucky with more than 10,000 residents according to the following seven criteria:

  • Murders
  • Rapes
  • Robberies
  • Assaults
  • Burglaries
  • Thefts
  • Vehicle Thefts

…Which we then divided into four categories:

  • Murders
  • Violent Crimes
  • Property Crimes
  • Total Crimes

…And then omitted any places that did not report crime data to the bureau that year, which left us with a total of 36 places. From there, we calculated the number of crimes per capita for each place and ranked them with scores from one to 36.

Next, we weighted these rankings so that murders, violent crimes, and property crimes made up 30 percent of the overall score, while the total number of crimes made up just 10 percent. And lastly, we averaged these weighted rankings into one Big Deal Score, where the lower the score, the safer the place. And Fort Thomas, your score was low!

To see more than just these 10 places, you can head down to the end of the post. Otherwise, we’ll take a closer look at just what makes each of these 10 places safer than the rest.

1. Fort Thomas

Fort Thomas, KY

Source: Flickr user Jeff Kubina

Congratulations to Fort Thomas, not only for making the list twice in a row, but for bumping it up to first place this year (from its second place ranking last year.) The reason for its No. 1 spot is simple: it ranked well in all of our categories.

More specifically, with just nine violent crimes for the entire year of 2013, it had the lowest number of violent crimes per person in the state—none of which were murders.

It also had a low number of property crimes—just 194 in all. With its population of just over 16,200, this meant it had the third lowest number of property crimes per person, and ultimately, the third lowest number of total crimes per person for the year.

2. Madisonville

Madisonville, KY

Source: Flickr user Jason Meredith

Another repeat from last year’s list, Madisonville really stepped it up a notch this year, jumping from the eighth safest place to the second. This was largely due to Madisonville’s impressively low number of total crimes—just 446 for its population of 19,761.

These crimes were made up of property crimes (the fourth lowest number per person) and violent crimes (the sixth lowest number per person), none of which included murder.

All in all, Madisonville residents had a 1 in 44 chance of being the victim of a crime—which is low, but not nearly as low as our next city…

3. Lawrenceburg

Lawrenceburg, KY

Source: Flickr user Egan Snow

Where Madisonville went up in our rankings, Lawrenceburg, unfortunately, dropped a couple of points, moving from first place last year to third. Of course this is still good—and even this year, you’d be hard pressed to beat Lawrenceburg’s total number of crimes—just 116!

With a population of 11,080, this meant that Lawrenceburg had the second lowest number of crimes per person in the state. This was mostly due to its low number of property crimes—the second lowest number per person—but also its relatively low number of violent crimes—the ninth lowest per person.

With such a low number of overall crimes, Lawrenceburg residents had just a 1 in 96 chance of being the victim of a crime.

4. Bardstown

Bardstown, KY

Source: Flickr user aprilandrandy

The first of the new cities to grace our 2015 list, Bardstown made the cut mostly for its lack of violence. In 2013, this city had just 13 violent crimes for the entire year. With its population of 12,916, this meant it had the fourth fewest per person.

It also had a low number of property crimes—just 315 in total, or the seventh fewest per person. All of this added up to just 328 total crimes, the sixth fewest total crimes per person in the state.

No wonder people love Bardstown. Well, this plus being one of the most adorable, postcard-like cities we’ve ever seen.

5. Berea

Berea, KY

Source: Flickr user Garrett Powers

This beautiful and artistic city is yet another that made our list last year, and yet another that has improved its rankings, hopping from seventh place to fifth.

The reason for its higher ranking this year is its lower number of violent crimes—the second lowest number per person in the state. Most of these 11 total violent crimes were assaults and robberies (five each). Fortunately there were no reported murders and there was only one rape.

Additionally, Berea had 374 property crimes (the 10th fewest per person) all adding up to 385 total crimes for the year, or the eighth fewest per person in the state.

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6. Jeffersontown

Jeffersontown, KY

Source: Wikimedia user Angry Aspie (talk)

While Jeffersontown did drop a couple of points from last year’s list, sixth place is still pretty darn good. The reason for this drop, though, was due to its increase in total crime. In the most recent crime report, Jeffersontown had a total of 735 crimes for the year—the ninth lowest per person.

In 2012, however, it had 631 total crimes.

Luckily, though, just 37 of this year’s crimes were violent, giving it the seventh fewest per person in the state, and none of these were murders.

7. Glasgow

Glasgow, KY

Source: Wikimedia user Kyhiking

Known nationwide for its Scottish Highland Games, this city is not just safe, also pretty darn unique. It also happens to be another of the cities that made our list two years in a row.

The reason for Glasgow’s high ranking is mostly due to its low number of property crimes. With a population of 14,117 and a total of 338 for the year, it had the sixth fewest per person. This, plus the 16th lowest number of violent crimes per person, gave Glasgow the seventh lowest number of total crimes per person in the state.

8. Shelbyville

Shelbyville, KY

Source: Flickr user Kentucky National Guard

Congrats to Shelbyville, another newcomer on our list of safest places. The reason for its induction is pretty simple: Shelbyville had the fifth lowest number of crimes per person in the state.

While its number of violent crimes weren’t exactly the best (it had 32 for the year, or the 18th fewest per person), it more than made up for this with its lack of property crime. With a population of just under 15,000 and a total of 342 property crimes for the year, it had the fifth lowest per person.

9. Independence

Independence, KY

Source: Wikimedia user W.marsh

The good news is, Independence made the list two years in a row. The bad news is, it somehow managed to fall from third place to ninth in just a year.

Well, somehow isn’t exactly right. It’s actually pretty clear how it managed to drop six points: in 2013, Independence had one reported murder. In fact, if it weren’t for this one murder, which was weighed so heavily (for obvious reasons), Independence would have surely been one of our top 3.

It had the third lowest number of violent crimes per person, and even the very lowest number of both property crimes and total crimes per person.

And even with the one murder, residents in Independence were still the least likely in the state to be the victim of a crime.

10. Elizabethtown

Elizabethtown, KY

Source: Flickr user Beatrice Murch

Bringing our list to a close is Elizabethtown, another new addition for 2015. Where Independence had one of the lowest numbers of property crime and therefore total crimes per person, Elizabethtown was much stronger in the category of violence.

In 2013, Elizabethtown had a total of just 35 violent crimes. With its population of 29,470, this meant it had the fifth fewest per person in the state—none of which were murders.

Unfortunately, it only ranked better than 16 other places for its number of property crimes (a total of 1,088), which wound up giving it a higher total number of crimes (1,123), and ultimately, pushed it to the bottom of our list. But hey, 10th on a list of 10 is still pretty darn good.

A New Year, a New Home

If you didn’t spot your hometown in our list of safest places, or even if it’s not quite as high as you’d like it to be in the table below, we can help you out. No, we can’t exactly clean up the crime in your city (sorry, Shively), but we can help find you a new home. Maybe one in some place like Fort Thomas.

Safest Place In Kentucky(Spring 2015 Edition)

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posted on: June 23, 2014
[views], 4 comments


  1. Katrina

    That is a crock if I ever saw it…Radcliff just does not report half the stuff that goes on in their city. So if you move there u will see it for yourself. Just gets brushed under the rug for most part. Maybe u should compare with 911 calls and other sources. Because I garuntee a lot is kept under wraps about this city..

  2. shaun

    I would have to agree with other post, good old boy system is how Radcliff runs things half of what happens never shows even in local papers.

  3. travis

    born and raised there and Radcliff is the same …..just a polished turd it still has the same old crony police dept. same stupid city projects Radcliff hasn’t grown a inch since 1970 it just moves around from Wilson rd, to Dixie hwy. and vice versa RADCLIFF IS SOUTH MULDRAUGH plain and simple no GI’s soon but more Korean churches and Mexican restaurants and liquor stores ….here’s a thought how about trying to get some industry going for some jobs instead of kissing ft.knox ass and taking government handout grants for stupid park benches RADCLIFF NEEDS A VISION FOR JOBS WORKING JOBS not set on the ass and call people on the phone jobs we have access to I-65 we have a rail head to move big things country wide but we have no leadership no factory’s and no future….sorry but the truth hurts and has to be said

  4. dena mccune

    I see drug related crimes are not listed. Because Shepherdsville and Radcliff definitely would not be on there.


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