If you’re looking for a family-friendly place in Rhode Island, we know just how important it is to find someplace safe. After all, finding people homes is kind of what we do at Movoto Real Estate.
But aside from that, we make lists. Lists of exciting places, expensive places, and even some that are pretty hairy. And today, we’re bringing you a list of the 10 safest places in Rhode Island—because safety’s important. And lists are fun.
Here are the 10 safest places in Rhode Island, the 2015 edition:
1. Town of Little Compton
2. Town of Glocester
3. Town of Scituate
4. Town of Jamestown
5. Town of Richmond
6. Town of Foster
7. Town of Barrington
8. Town of South Kingstown
9. Town of East Greenwich
10. Town of Smithfield
If you’re a regular reader of the Movoto Real Estate blog, first of all, thanks. Second of all, some of these places probably look a little familiar, as some of them appeared on last year’s list of safest places in Rhode Island.
But as you know, a lot can change in a year. So let’s move on to see how we came up with this latest list, as well as why each of these 10 places are so safe.
As with any of our Big Deal Lists, we relied, not on our own opinions, but on the cold, hard facts. So we went straight to the top guns in the field, the FBI. They recently released their 2013 FBI Uniform Crime Report, which we used to look at the largest places in Rhode Island according to the following criteria:
- Vehicle Thefts
Then we divided these crimes into four categories:
- Violent Crimes
- Property Crimes
- Total Crimes
Next, we calculated the number of crimes per person for each of our 38 places. We then ranked each place with a score from one to 38, where the lower scores were the safer places.
Because some crimes are more heinous than others, we decided to weight these rankings so that murders, violent crimes, and property crimes each made up 30 percent of the overall score, where the total number of crimes accounted for just 10 percent.
And finally, we averaged these weighted rankings into one overall Big Deal Score, where the lowest score went to our safest place for 2015, Little Compton.
For a look at how all of the places we looked at ranked, just pop down to the bottom of the post. Otherwise, here’s a closer look at our top 10 safest places.
Source: Flickr user dave milsom
This little town is everything that you’d expect from a charming community in the northeast—including incredibly safe.
In 2013, Little Compton had a grand total of just 26 crimes for the entire year. It had the third fewest crimes per person, but still, that’s pretty low.
And even lower was the number of violent crimes. Little Compton had none. Yes, as in zero, zilch, nada. For the entire year! This easily gave Little Compton the lowest number of violent crimes per person in the state.
Source: Flickr user Andrew Malone
Just as Little Compton was on our list two years in a row, so too is Glocester (and Scituate and Richmond and Barrington…). Anyway, the reason that this town jumped from sixth to second place in just a year was its incredibly low number of total crimes in 2013.
With a population just shy of 10,000 people, and a total of 52 crimes, Glocester had the lowest number of crimes per person in the state. This was made up of 49 property crimes (also the lowest number per person) and three violent crimes (the sixth lowest number per person). None of these were murders.
Because of such a low total number of crimes, residents had just a 1 in 190 chance of being the victim of a crime.
Source: Wikimedia user Swampyank
In 2013, this Providence County town had the second fewest crimes overall per person—a total of just 77 for its 10,443 residents. Interestingly, this was fewer than it had the year before (91 crimes per person), and yet Scituate dropped by one point in our rankings.
Don’t worry, Scituate residents. It wasn’t because your town got more dangerous. As a matter of fact in 2013 Scituate had just three violent crimes for the year, where in 2012 it had four, and the total number of property crimes went up only slightly.
No, the reason for its slight decline over the year really didn’t have anything to do with Scituate itself. It was merely because the cities before it improved even more than it did. So, nothing personal Scituate. You’re still safe—and in fact, even safer than you were a year ago.
Source: Flickr user Clara S.
Jamestown, you were so close to tying with Little Compton for its unbeatably low number of zero violent crimes in 2013. Unfortunately, though, there was one rape reported, giving Jamestown the second fewest violent crimes per person. Still, one violent crime for the year? Not too shabby.
Additionally, Jamestown had 55 property crimes (50 cases of theft and 5 burglaries), giving it the eighth fewest property crimes and the seventh fewest crimes per person overall.
Source: Flickr user Susteph
Richmond went from first place on last year’s list to fifth place on this year’s, but being fifth safest in the state is nothing to shake a stick at.
Once again, it seems as though Richmond’s slight drop in rankings didn’t have a whole lot to do with Richmond itself. It had more to do with other places just getting even safer. After all, Richmond had a total of just 63 crimes in 2013, where in 2012, it had 83.
These 63 crimes were made up of 58 property crimes and five violent crimes and was the fourth lowest number of crimes per person in the state.
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Source: Flickr user s-bahn
This newbie to our list this year ranked high for its overall low number of crimes—the fifth lowest per person, actually.
These 41 crimes were made up of 38 property crimes (also the fifth fewest per person) and three violent crimes (the 11th fewest per person).
All of this gave residents just a 1 in 114 chance of being the victim of a crime.
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Source: Flickr user Dan Connolly
Last year, Barrington ranked fifth on our list of safest places, and even though it comes in as seventh this year, that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s any more dangerous.
It had a few more property crimes in 2013 than it did it 2012, going from 179 to 214, but it actually had fewer violent crimes—in 2012, it had two rapes, three robberies, and one assault, whereas in 2013, it just had one of each (and no murders).
In fact, it was mainly due to this fourth lowest number of violent crimes per person that Barrington came in among our top 10.
Source: Flickr user Ginny Lacey Gorman
This town with a population of just over 30,000 residents is perfect proof that smaller doesn’t always mean safer. Case in point: Central Falls came in at the very bottom of our list and it has about 11,000 fewer residents than South Kingstown.
And speaking of South Kingstown—in 2013, this town had a total of just 318 crimes, giving it the eighth fewest crimes per person. This was made up of the seventh fewest property crimes and the 13th fewest violent crimes per person.
Source: Flickr user Andrew Malone
In 2012, East Greenwich had a total of just 163 crimes, which included just one violent crime.
This year its total number of crimes jumped from 163 to 175, which, for its population of just over 13,000, means that it had the 12th lowest number of crimes per person. Six of these were violent crimes, which is a jump from their one robbery in 2012, but still, the seventh fewest violent crimes per person is still pretty impressive.
Source: Flickr user Jessica
Last but not least was the Town of Smithfield. This Safest Places First Timer scored well in our analysis for its impressively low number of property crimes and therefore total crimes.
In 2013, it had a reported 218 property crimes for its population of 21,490—that’s the ninth fewest property crimes per person in the state. These included 13 vehicle thefts, 155 thefts, and 50 burglaries.
This plus its 16 violent crimes gave Smithfield the ninth fewest crimes per person overall in the state.
Finding a Safe Place in Rhode Island
Finding a safe and family-friendly place in Rhode Island shouldn’t exactly be difficult—after all, it is the 14th safest state in the nation.
Unfortunately, though, not all of the Ocean State’s cities and towns are as safe as these 10. To see how your hometown ranked, just check out the table below.
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