2015 Safest Places in Illinois Study

2015 Safest Places in Illinois Study

When deciding where to live, safety is a top priority. Our team at ValuePenguin has analyzed the most recent FBI Crime Report to determine the safety of cities in Illinois. These 298 cities ranged in a crime score from 60 to 2,409. Villages -- not cities, towns or the like -- proved to be the safest. Each member of our top five safest places classifies itself as such and, interestingly enough, is within 50 miles north or west of Chicago. It should come as no surprise that the bustling Windy City itself ranked 269th overall in our crime score, which took into account both the amount of violent and property-related crimes per 100,000 people (more on our methodology below). The state’s capital, Springfield, fell even further on our list, checking in at 294th. For more insight, take a look at the report below:

5 Safest Places in Illinois

These cities have an average crime score of 82, 86 percent lower than their typical peer in Illinois. All of these places have populations of less than 15,000. With some of the state’s lowest total violent crime rates, these five are the safest places in Illinois.

1. Hawthorn Woods, IL

Hawthorn Woods, IL

Hawthorn Woods bested its statewide competition with a crime score of just 60. It reported one violent crime to the FBI in 2013, an aggravated assault, plus 19 property-related crimes. Founded by 71 residents in 1958, Hawthorn Woods has maintained a modest population growth. It is situated about 45 miles north of downtown Chicago, which registered a crime score of 1,068 thanks, in large part, to its population of nearly three million people. The more secluded Hawthorn Woods, by contrast, features many estates on land spanning at least an acre.

Factor

Value

Population

7,731

Crime Score

60

2. Inverness, IL

Inverness, IL
Like Hawthorn Woods, Inverness calls itself a "village" and is an extremely safe one in which to live. Earning its self-ascribed moniker -- "quiet, stable residential community" -- Inverness reported just one violent crime to the FBI two years ago, leading to a crime score of 74. That is 87 percent lower than a given Illinois town.

Factor

Value

Population

7,519

Crime Score

74

3. Campton Hills, IL

Campton Hills, IL

Villages are apparently much safer than cities. This one, Campton Hills is situated 50 miles west of Chicago. With values on agriculture and education, the more rural village reported zero violent crimes and 47 property-related crimes in 2013. Founded in 2007 when the townships of Campton and Plato were incorporated, Campton Hills is a short drive from a Class A Minor League Baseball team, the Kane County Cougars.

Factor

Value

Population

11,327

Crime Score

83

4. Lindenhurst, IL

Lindenhurst, IL

The Village of Lindenhurst, located in the heart of Lake County, comes in fourth and has the most residents of the top five towns on our list. Lindenhurst, which registered four violent crimes in 2013, is surrounded by green, open spaces and has long offered Chicagoans and other travelers respite from the big city. With 100-plus businesses up and running, including its sprawling Vista Medical Campus, the locals earn an estimated $90,981 in median household income in 2012, or about $36,000 more than that of the state as a whole.

Factor

Value

Population

14,470
Crime Score88

5. Winfield, IL

Winfield, IL

Rounding out our top five is the Village of Winfield and its effective 18-man police department. Its crime score accounts for just two violent crimes in all of 2013. Like its sister villages on this list, Winfield’s local government is led by a president and a board of trustees that are elected to their positions. The estimated median value of a house or condo in Winfield was $268,686, or $98,000 more than that of the state overall, according to 2012 data. The town is expecting that its planned Winfield Rivermark project will further connect DuPage County residents to its businesses.

Factor

Value

Population

9,507

Crime Score

105

Map of the Safest Places in Illinois

This is an interactive map of the 298 cities, towns and, yes, villages that were analyzed in our study as well as the 2013 FBI report. Roll your cursor over each dot for the city name and crime score.

Methodology

To rank these places, we collected data from the 2013 FBI crime statistics by city, which provides the most recent crime data available. Not every town participates in this report and we also excluded towns with fewer than 5,000 residents because towns with small populations are more sensitive to crime score fluctuations for fewer crimes committed. The raw data report included property crimes (burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson), and violent crimes (murder/manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault) from all law enforcement agencies that chose to partake in the FBI Uniform Crime Reporting program.

We standardized the data to reflect violent and property crimes per 100,000, to account for population. Then, we aggregated a "crime score" by weighting violent crime at 90% and property crime at 10%. Though property crime is more prevalent, we figured that violent crime is more concerning to town residents. We then ranked the cities based on their crime scores.

Here is an alphabetical table of all cities included with their ranks, making it easier to compare different cities. See where your city lies!

Rank

CityPopulationViolent Crime per 100kProperty Crime per 100kCrime Score

138

Addison37,3781071,726431

127

Algonquin29,980601,751398

222

Alsip19,4612162,908754

279

Alton27,2773964,6741,252

135

Antioch14,3931111,654420

65

Arlington Heights75,978551,061256

176

Aurora200,5513001,492538

79

Barrington10,356191,333282

20

Bartlett41,73343652165

242

Bartonville6,4392173,541882

101

Batavia26,401761,341329

29

Beardstown5,924135456199

255

Bellwood19,1556892,010953

125

Belvidere25,3081151,482388

126

Bensenville18,5341351,451398

211

Benton7,0632272,548691

179

Berkeley5,2372481,776554

187

Berwyn56,8382062,115588

204

Bethalto9,4414131,663663

189

Bloomingdale22,301452,838604

245

Bloomington78,0605112,446898

246

Blue Island23,8464532,717906

166

Bolingbrook74,2242341,533494

258

Bradley15,8601644,224976

95

Braidwood6,2141131,126315

228

Bridgeview16,5411813,162777

276

Broadview7,9714014,3281,187

147

Brookfield19,050891,911454

22

Buffalo Grove41,77419800175

175

Burbank29,1832671,580530

38

Burr Ridge10,737191,034222

283

Cahokia14,8194394,6491,281

3

Campton Hills11,327-41583

203

Canton14,4611872,552660

290

Carbondale26,2489303,9581,535

226

Carlinville5,8282572,848776

83

Carol Stream40,376721,152288

109

Carpentersville38,342681,458346

27

Cary18,09061730195

292

Centralia12,8055236,3961,698

275

Champaign82,9667882,7531,181

9

Channahon12,604-659132

16

Charleston21,926100401161

50

Chester8,448166533239

269

Chicago2,720,5544503,5401,068

264

Chicago Ridge14,4631524,5501,032

195

Chillicothe6,1352122,282626

223

Cicero84,2044112,192767

12

Clarendon Hills8,614-708142

174

Coal City5,5471082,163519

215

Collinsville25,1351313,107726

75

Colona5,151191,320280

67

Columbia9,960100914263

238

Country Club Hills16,9542603,279864

197

Countryside5,982672,909635

133

Crest Hill20,8651251,572414

182

Crete8,2782171,969568

160

Crystal Lake40,3831161,956484

72

Darien22,365541,140271

251

De Kalb43,7654662,808935

260

Decatur75,1904673,1771,009

33

Deerfield18,283111,006210

110

Des Plaines58,975951,355347

177

Dixon15,304852,372542

295

Dolton23,3097126,4571,861

104

Downers Grove49,558501,465333

142

Du Quoin5,9931331,652437

248

East Alton6,1812103,818932

212

East Moline21,4302942,296694

240

East Peoria23,4583622,907871

120

Edwardsville24,511611,656380

234

Effingham12,6331903,269806

23

Elburn5,68935756179

172

Elgin110,4542141,735518

141

Elk Grove Village33,414751,876435

68

Elmhurst45,501261,222265

123

Elmwood Park24,9981161,456384

130

Eureka5,3601311,530410

213

Evanston75,7092502,528705

216

Evergreen Park19,9511403,098732

227

Fairfield5,0683352,545777

262

Fairview Heights16,9602004,3281,026

214

Flora5,054993,205720

149

Flossmoor9,5261571,648456

285

Forest Park14,2332955,5431,345

167

Fox Lake10,5371331,946495

73

Frankfort18,115611,121273

139

Franklin Park18,4171141,700431

265

Galesburg31,6023963,6111,039

124

Geneseo6,5411071,498385

48

Geneva21,790231,092237

71

Genoa5,185116887270

11

Gilberts7,48413641139

26

Glen Carbon12,91685596187

47

Glen Ellyn27,736321,053237

18

Glencoe8,840-814163

117

Glendale Heights34,6301161,412375

64

Glenview45,125491,081255

181

Glenwood9,0601432,263567

102

Godfrey17,894671,386331

268

Granite City29,4475912,9511,063

145

Grayslake21,1421471,655448

131

Greenville6,965571,823411

263

Gurnee31,2531224,6521,028

25

Hampshire5,64289567184

53

Hanover Park38,49996836244

235

Harrisburg9,0345201,970810

89

Harvard9,326431,362307

298

Harvey25,4081,6025,6362,409

143

Harwood Heights8,6751381,648440

1

Hawthorn Woods7,7311324660

259

Hazel Crest14,2083943,4561,006

224

Herrin12,75183,811769

99

Hickory Hills14,172711,355327

69

Highland Park29,939771,025267

105

Highwood5,345187935337

188

Hillsboro6,1074751,048589

30

Hinsdale17,22212958201

86

Hoffman Estates52,4221051,049294

21

Homer Glen24,39520754167

243

Homewood19,4452313,512888

281

Hoopeston5,2666083,8361,253

19

Huntley24,97816753163

2

Inverness7,5191331974

39

Island Lake8,02775835227

77

Itasca8,810341,271281

191

Jacksonville19,2562032,238610

239

Jerseyville8,4912363,404869

218

Joliet148,4623752,201740

43

Justice13,05577850231

286

Kankakee27,2867183,9321,361

237

Kewanee12,7392353,195827

41

La Grange15,71895757228

8

La Grange Park13,6507623130

151

La Salle9,4481271,799461

6

Lake in the Hills29,13351336108

36

Lake Villa8,79868830221

97

Lake Zurich19,999151,540320

13

Lakemoor6,04717695152

273

Lansing28,5203824,1131,128

122

Lemont16,460791,592382

58

Libertyville20,368291,134250

244

Lincoln14,2653513,049890

32

Lincolnshire7,27155798204

247

Lincolnwood12,675794,284920

4

Lindenhurst14,4702833288

56

Lisle22,717571,008247

220

Litchfield6,7751333,188744

81

Lockport25,100921,060285

164

Lombard43,883932,090493

159

Lyons10,7811391,827477

196

Machesney Park23,2112502,163632

200

Macomb19,2462862,073643

60

Mahomet7,588132738253

10

Manhattan7,15242517137

45

Marengo7,572401,017235

70

Marion17,349401,187270

170

Marseilles5,0561382,017514

61

Maryville7,89076963253

28

Mascoutah7,96663728196

277

Matteson19,1883804,5811,221

190

Mattoon18,2972242,137607

287

Maywood24,1848563,5151,388

140

McHenry26,7611381,622435

163

Melrose Park25,5591681,776490

137

Mendota7,4091481,539427

272

Metropolis6,4555733,2381,106

198

Midlothian14,9182682,125639

192

Milan5,0931572,435613

57

Minooka11,149361,103249

46

Mokena19,13052967235

241

Moline43,1722803,238872

282

Monmouth9,4885903,9421,261

150

Montgomery19,259931,906456

17

Monticello5,436129294162

194

Morris13,8821372,579625

74

Morton16,462109942276

148

Morton Grove23,5161321,748455

231

Mount Carmel7,1002542,901783

62

Mount Prospect54,600381,117254

297

Mount Vernon15,2031,4276,2292,388

24

Mount Zion5,885102510184

37

Mundelein31,29151901221

96

Naperville144,221731,297318

82

New Lenox24,805851,097287

184

Niles30,0081172,399573

201

Normal54,2412122,389647

254

Norridge14,6761294,231950

112

North Aurora17,0951231,293357

55

North Chicago28,780202427247

291

North Riverside6,6983286,7781,618

90

Northbrook33,567241,442307

34

Northfield5,48436912212

208

Northlake12,382813,045674

288

Oak Brook8,022506,8061,401

134

Oak Forest28,2111311,560417

165

Oak Lawn57,0831421,899493

236

Oak Park52,0512423,168827

154

O'Fallon29,3881161,861465

253

Olney9,0843303,391942

230

Olympia Fields5,046593,666781

162

Orland Park57,578302,313486

103

Oswego32,057561,438333

158

Ottawa18,507702,097475

44

Palatine69,31748967231

84

Palos Heights12,611481,253289

51

Palos Hills17,64674907240

171

Pana5,7782081,748516

207

Paris8,6123372,020673

156

Park City7,4961471,761470

225

Park Forest22,0524262,145770

78

Park Ridge37,788401,249282

233

Pekin34,0853522,602802

284

Peoria115,9536763,8391,309

229

Peoria Heights6,1173922,321778

153

Peru10,1551281,812465

66

Pinckneyville5,582215430258

15

Pingree Grove5,02840636159

59

Plainfield40,639491,056250

42

Plano11,104181,072229

256

Pontiac11,8024323,042954

121

Pontoon Beach5,7321051,483380

217

Posen6,0282822,555737

186

Princeton7,4841602,285585

88

Prospect Heights16,399165860304

261

Quincy40,8414603,2221,013

280

Rantoul12,9338202,9851,253

221

Richton Park13,7683052,506745

193

River Forest11,2291342,583623

128

River Grove10,287491,798399

293

Riverdale13,6251,3433,6551,806

161

Riverside8,9081681,751485

270

Robbins5,4387172,5381,081

209

Robinson7,6773911,824677

173

Rock Falls9,1002311,670519

249

Rock Island38,8935142,605932

296

Rockford150,2091,3754,7572,051

111

Rockton7,619391,588349

87

Rolling Meadows24,283951,095295

144

Romeoville39,778751,901440

108

Roscoe10,7001031,308344

54

Roselle23,047431,059246

94

Round Lake18,496146989315

180

Round Lake Beach28,0871322,247555

157

Round Lake Park7,4252151,495471

267

Salem7,349824,9261,050

289

Sauk Village10,5746814,5581,456

202

Schaumburg74,940952,912658

155

Schiller Park11,876762,029466

152

Shiloh13,2121891,567465

80

Shorewood16,387110976283

257

Silvis7,5053333,478962

210

Skokie65,1552412,425678

146

South Beloit7,8042051,435451

115

South Elgin22,2951351,319371

185

South Holland22,1782481,880574

7

Spring Grove5,75817521118

294

Springfield117,3511,0155,0691,826

116

St. Charles33,433601,630374

92

Staunton5,124156917308

271

Steger9,5953344,1171,090

252

Sterling15,1831654,037939

91

Stickney6,8261171,069308

129

Streamwood40,3401021,644410

199

Streator13,5141482,612641

219

Summit11,5793452,323741

183

Swansea13,8212032,033569

113

Sycamore17,469631,546359

178

Taylorville11,1582241,846548

119

Tinley Park57,270801,572379

76

Troy9,960141843281

266

Urbana41,5983393,8851,048

205

Vandalia7,0033861,814671

136

Vernon Hills25,860541,883420

168

Villa Park22,0951222,010500

40

Warrenville13,35337989228

114

Washington15,4881551,207365

232

Watseka5,1722512,997800

31

Wauconda13,79229899203

250

Waukegan88,7634562,842933

118

West Chicago27,6591191,414378

206

West Dundee7,411543,144672

107

Westchester16,812831,386344

100

Westmont24,9651041,226328

35

Wheaton53,61460858219

98

Wheeling38,0271001,228326

14

Willow Springs5,71170490154

132

Willowbrook8,654691,780411

52

Wilmington5,73987854240

5

Winfield9,50721442105

63

Winnetka12,425561,046254

169

Winthrop Harbor6,7282381,605511

106

Wood Dale13,953651,433338

278

Wood River10,4422975,0181,241

93

Woodstock25,164681,299314

49

Worth10,85974893238

85

Yorkville17,657681,189292

274

Zion24,3386003,3081,141

Ting is a ValuePenguin Co-Founder. She previously evaluated corporate mergers and acquisitions as a Financial Analyst at Citigroup.