WESTFIELD, NJ — The town is the 15th safest municipality in the United States and the best in Union County, according to a study by a Utah-based company that reviews home safety companies and products.

Of New Jersey's 565 municipalities, Westfield ranked the sixth safest, the recent report from SafeWise said. In Union County, it ranked the top safest place followed closely by nearby Cranford, which came in at 21st nationwide. The report released last month is based on FBI crime statistics for 2017, which SafeWise said comprise the most recent data available for a national ranking.

“Cities were ranked based on the number of reported violent crimes (aggravated assault, murder, rape, and robbery) in each city," the report stated. "If there was a tie, we also factored in the number of property crimes (burglary, arson, larceny-theft, and motor vehicle theft). To level the playing field, we calculated the rate of crimes per 1,000 people in each city.”

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Last November, New York Magazine likened Westfield to Mayberry, the idyllic setting of "The Andy Griffith Show." But even Mayberry had its town drunk, Otis Campbell, and other lawbreakers.

In a state where violent crimes happen daily, incidents to dominate headlines in Westfield recently have included a convenience store stickup that police say the suspected robber pulled off with a fake firearm, the theft of a car left running and a string of home burglaries police linked to a 16-year-old boy.

Outranking the Union County municipalities in New Jersey were Bernards Township, Denville Township, Pequannock Township and Bergenfield.

The top 10 safest cities in the United States include the following, according to the March 14 SafeWise list:

  • 1     Hopkinton, Massachusetts
  • 2     Ridgefield, Connecticut
  • 3     Madison, Connecticut
  • 4     Harrison Town, New York
  • 5     Bernards Township, New Jersey
  • 6     Norton, Massachusetts
  • 7     Broadview Heights, Ohio
  • 8     Denville Township, New Jersey
  • 9     Pequannock Township, New Jersey
  • 10   Bergenfield, New Jersey

Thirty cities in New Jersey made SafeWise’s top 100, the largest showing of any state, followed by Connecticut with 14 cities and Pennsylvania with 10. In addition to Denville, Bernards Township, Pequannock and Bergenfield, the following New Jersey cities made the top 100:

  • 12   Monroe Township
  • 15   Westfield
  • 17   Hawthorne
  • 20   Milford
  • 21   Cranford Township
  • 22   Readington Township
  • 24   Morris Township
  • 26   Montville Township
  • 28   Randolph Township
  • 29   Washington Township (Morris County)
  • 33   Tinton Falls
  • 34   Marlboro Township
  • 49   Princeton
  • 50   Dumont
  • 51   Hillsborough Township
  • 54   Raritan Township
  • 56   Ridgewood
  • 63   Madison
  • 67   Manchester Township
  • 69   Montgomery Township
  • 80   Jefferson Township
  • 89   Livingston Township
  • 94   Mount Olive Township
  • 96   Clark Township

View SafeWise’s entire report on the company's website.

Ferlanda Nixon is the Editor of TAPinto Denville.

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