Do you live in one of the most dangerous cities in Nebraska?
We all watch the news and see reports on Facebook of the latest crimes that happen in our hometowns. But it can be hard to tell at a big picture level how dangerous our town actually is.
No one wants to feel unsafe, and statistically speaking, odds are that where you live is most likely relatively safe. In order to help the good people of Nebraska — and anyone looking to move to Nebraska — know just how close they are to danger, we took data from the annual FBI report and did some serious analysis.
The data shows that these ten cities are currently the most dangerous in the Cornhusker State for 2019:
- Omaha (Photos)
- Fairbury (Photos)
- Crete (Photos)
- Norfolk (Photos)
- McCook (Photos)
- Bellevue (Photos)
- Valley (Photos)
- York (Photos)
- O’Neill (Photos)
After analyzing 12 cities in Nebraska, why did Omaha take the top spot?
For the answer to this question and a detailed explanation of the data and analysis we used in creating this ranking, read on.
Or learn more about the safest places in Nebraska.
For more Nebraska reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Live In Nebraska
- These Are The 10 Best Counties To Live In Nebraska
- 10 Cheapest Places To Live In Nebraska
Graphing The Most Dangerous And Safest Places In Nebraska
How we determined the most dangerous cities in Nebraska for 2019?
Every year the FBI release two crime datasets, a preliminary dataset limited to the biggest cities in the country, followed by a more detailed release at the end of the year.
For our analysis, we focused on the JUST released 2017 data, specifically the 2017 Crime In The United States Report. We will update the results when data becomes available in September 2019.
So what criteria did we use? Have a look:
- Violent Crimes Per Capita
- Property Crimes Per Capita
In order to make the analysis as apples to apples as possible, we only considered cities over 2,000 in population. That left us with 12 cities in Nebraska.
We then ranked each city from 1 to 12 for the two criteria with a #1 ranking being the most dangerous for the particular criteria.
Next, we averaged the two rankings into one “Dangerous Index”.
Finally, we ranked every city on the “Dangerous Index” with the lowest index being the most dangerous in Nebraska — Omaha.
Read on for a detailed look at the 10 most dangerous cities in Nebraska.
It’s very rare that the largest city in a state is the most dangerous. Sure, there are going to be more crimes, overall, but we take into account the number of crimes per person. And Omaha takes the cake.
Residents have a 1 in 154 chance of being the victim of a violent crime, which means rape, murder or aggravated assault. That’s pretty high, but for a state like Nebraska, that’s just unacceptable.
Additionally, if you live in Omaha, you have a 1 in 25.8 chance of being the victim of a property crime. That’s a lot of stolen laptops, cell phones and tractor implements.
There were 31 murders in Omaha in 2017. Most of the crime is on the east and south ends of town.
The unemployment rate is low here, and the number of jobs are ticking upwards, so hopefully, the crime numbers, which have been slowly trending upwards, will begin to go down.
Fairbury is the smallest city to make this list, but don’t let that fool you — the city is also one of the most violent in the state.
Fairbury residents had a 1 in 262 chance of being the victim of a violent crime in 2017.
The only reason Fairbury is so low on this list is because it has the lowest frequency of property crime (about 1 per 107 residents in 2017) of any city on this list.
Little Crete, Nebraska has a relatively high crime rate, especially for Nebraska. Located way out on state route 33 southwest of Lincoln, the folks who live here might feel even less safe because they are so isolated out there. Odds are in a town this small, where you have a 1 in 34 chance of being a victim of a property crime, you’re pretty much aware of who the trouble makers are.
The 4th most dangerous city in Nebraska goes to Norfolk.
And much like a walk in a major city park, you need to watch for muggers and property theft as it ranks as having the highest rate of property theft in the Cornhusker State. You had a 1 in 52.3 chance of being a victim of a property crime in 2017 in Norfolk.
It’s not totally clear why the property crime rate is so high. People live spread out, unemployment is relatively high — but not super high — and poverty isn’t as bad as in some other parts of the state.
A smaller city on this list, McCook has experienced some wild swings in crime in recent years.
While instances of violent crime fell to 8 between 2015-17, property crime now stands at 4th worst.
If they could get the same magic working for property crime as they have for violence, McCook may one day be the idyllic place its residents want it to be.
Bellevue experienced a drop in its property crime rate between 2015-17.
That’s a difference of residents having about a 1 in 15 shot of being the victim of theft or arson at the beginning to a 1 in 54.4 shot in 2017.
Violent crime, meanwhile, remained at around the same level.
Rank Last Year: –
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 185 (4th most dangerous)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 503 (10th most dangerous)
More on Cozad: Data
Cozad ranks as the 7th most dangerous in Nebraska.
The city has not seen any improvements in its violent crime in recent years, but property crime did drop between 2015-17.
That’s good, because without this improvement, Cozad’s property crime rate might be the worst in Nebraska.
Valley saw four violent crimes in 2013, which may seem low, but for a place of less than 2,000 people, you can bet that lots of people knew who dunnit and why. Additionally, it sounds like there are a lot of homes broken into here, since there were 186 reports of a crime, according to the latest data.
For such a small place, that’s really alarming.
York is the 4th largest and 9th most dangerous city in Nebraska.
Residents have a 1 in 33.7 chance of being the victim of a property crime each year, and chances of a violent crime now stand at 1 in Over 300, making York quite a dangerous place to be.
O’Neill may not even be on this list in another year if the current trends continue — violent crime was more than cut in half between 2015-17, with the number of instances falling from to 5.
Property crime also fell during this time, so O’Neill is improving its crime altogether.
Locking It All Up In Nebraska
The latest FBI crime data shows that Omaha ranks as the most dangerous city in Nebraska for 2019.
We want to point out again that there’s still safes places in Omaha and that this isn’t a comment on the people that live there. So please don’t beat us up.
If you’re curious enough, here are the safest cities in Nebraska:
- O’Neill (Pop. 3,618)
- Milford (Pop. 2,115)
- Madison (Pop. 2,358)
For more Nebraska reading, check out:
- 10 Best Places To Raise A Family In Nebraska
- These Are The 10 Best Places To Retire In Nebraska
- These Are The 10 Richest Cities In Nebraska
- 10 Safest Places In Nebraska
- 10 Worst Places To Live In Nebraska
Detailed List Of The Most Dangerous Cities In Nebraska