Salt Lake City and Utah have made so many Top 10 lists in the past few years it's hard to keep track of how speshul we really are. Well, here's a prize we might not want to share with folks thinking of moving here: According to reviews.org, SLC has the most property crime per 1,000 people.
The site took FBI crime data from 2016 and looked at cities and towns with the least and most property crimes. What is a property crime? It can be anything from vehicle break-ins to burglary, larceny and stolen cars. Reviews.org removed car crimes and towns with less than 100,000 people from the mix to come up with its list of the best and worst cities to own or rent a property. Here are the results: 1. Salt Lake City with a rate of 75.4 crimes per 1,000 people; 2. Springfield, Mo., at 74.88; 3. Spokane, Wash., at 67.58; 4. Little Rock, Ark., at 63.23; 5. Pueblo, Colo., at 57.33; 6. Tucson, Ariz., at 54.95; 7. Albuquerque, N.M., at 54.88; 8. Fort Lauderdale, Fla., at 53.59; 9. Tacoma, Wash., at 53.02, and 10. Tallahassee at 52.07.
On the flip side, the 10 cities with the least amount of property crime are 1. Lakewood Township, N.J.; 2. Yonkers, N.Y.; 3. Cary, N.C.; 4. Edison Township, N.J.; 5. Naperville, Ill.; 6. Sterling Heights, Mich.; 7. Allen, Texas; 8. Rialto, Calif.; 9. Simi Valley, Calif.; and 10. Santa Clarita, Calif.
Neighborhoodscout.com reports that my chances of becoming a victim of a property crime in Salt Lake City is 1 in 11. For Utah as a whole, it's 1 in 34. I have friends with the SLCPD and UTA Police, and they say that most property crimes are opportunity crimes. We leave our cars and homes unlocked. We leave stuff in our cars in plain sight for criminals to steal. Packages are stolen from porches. We're going to keep seeing an uptick in crimes because of population growth. And although Salt Lake City hopes to add a lot more cops in the next few years, citizens will continue to be victims of property crime.
Vehicle break-ins are one of the top crimes downtown. I remember a few years back, my cop friends talked about a gang targeting cars around Vivint SmartHome Arena. They knew drivers were going to be gone for several hours and they had time to steal from both locked and unlocked cars.
Hey, we're all in a hurry these days. Don't leave anything visible in your car. Go as far as opening up your jockey box to show it's empty. Put valuables in the trunk or take them with you when you go to that concert, ball game or shop to avoid becoming a statistic.