Annual list names Sterling second safest Michigan city

By: Cortney Casey | Sterling Heights Sentry | Published January 9, 2012

City administrators and officials are celebrating Sterling Heights’ continued inclusion on an annual roundup of the nation’s safest communities.

Released late last year, CQ Press’ City Crime Rankings 2011-2012: Crime in Metropolitan America identifies Sterling Heights as the second safest city in the state and first among Michigan communities with more than 100,000 residents.

Sterling Heights came in at No. 36 among the 405 cities included, a slight improvement over the previous year’s 39th place ranking.

Lt. Luke Riley of the Sterling Heights Police Department said he was pleased that the city hovered in the upper portion of CQ’s list despite the troubled economy, which can influence crime rates.

“The uniform (officers) and detectives are doing a great job to keep the city where it’s at in the ranking, where it’s been in the past, and keeping things consistent,” he said.

Mayor Richard Notte agreed that the police “do a great job,” and credited a supportive community for doing its part, too.

“I think it’s everybody working together: the police, the residents, city employees, administration, council,” he said. “I think everybody does a little bit, and the job gets done. I think it’s a lot of teamwork.”

At No. 19, neighboring Troy claimed the top spot in the state. Farmington Hills (No. 46), Canton Township (No. 50), Livonia (No. 71) and Ann Arbor (No. 79) also made the top 100.

Besides Ann Arbor, Sterling Heights’ 100,000-plus population counterparts came in at Nos. 255 (Warren), 291 (Grand Rapids) and 345 (Lansing).

According to CQ’s list, Fishers, Ind., boasted the lowest crime rate, nabbing the No. 1 slot.

Flint, which reportedly tallied the second-highest levels of murder and violent crime, had the unsavory distinction of having the highest overall crime rate. Camden, N.J.; Detroit; St. Louis, Mo.; and Oakland, Calif., rounded out the five cities with the highest crime levels.

In terms of metropolitan areas, the Logan, Utah, region reportedly had the lowest crime rate; the Detroit/Livonia/Dear-born region, the highest.

CQ Press, a Washington, D.C.-based publisher, formulates the list based on figures reported to the FBI by communities with at least 75,000 residents in the categories of murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary and motor vehicle theft.

According to the company, the list is intended to serve as “a staple resource for researchers, city and law enforcement officials, and the news media that follow trends in crime.”

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