8th Safest Town In The Nation
Middletown Township is the safest city in New Jersey, according to the National Council for Home Safety and Security’s annual Top 100 Safest Cities in America report.
NCHSS is a national trade association of home security professionals. They’ve been ranking the safety of America’s communities since 2006 using data from the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report statistics and their own internal research. Their most recent study includes 764 cities with populations over 50,000 who submitted complete crime reports to the FBI. The number of violent crimes and property crimes per 100,000 people determine the cities’ ranking.
Middletown experienced 25 violent crimes and 497 property crimes in 2016 (38 violent and 754 property per 100,000 people), according to the report. The average crime rate of all cities ranked was 108 violent and 1,153 per 100,000 people. The report also acknowledged Middletown’s “many emergency services” and its recent top 10 ranking in Safewise’s 2017 report, The 30 Safest Cities to Raise a Child in America.
“We are proud to be recognized as the safest town in New Jersey, and once again named as one of the top 10 safest places to live in the country,” said Mayor Gerard P. Scharfenberger. “Our Police Chief Craig Weber and the department’s community-oriented approach to policing, coupled with their proactive policing strategies that target crime, are just some of the many reasons they are so deserving of this award.”
Crime in Middletown dropped for the seventh consecutive year, with index crimes down 13 percent over the last year and 48 percent compared to 2010. Middletown Township Police Chief Craig Weber makes training a priority. The Police Department has been recognized by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) for being one of only 36 agencies nationwide to complete the Missing Kids Readiness Project. In addition, the department focuses resources on preventing and solving crimes, including a designated anti-crime unit to address and respond more quickly to illegal activity.
“Middletown has always had a long history of being known as a safe community, and our officers work very hard to carry on and maintain that tradition,” said Middletown Township Police Chief Craig Weber. “This most recent ranking as the safest city in New Jersey is a credit to the dedication and professionalism of the men and women of the Police Department. It’s also a reflection of the special relationship we share with our community and the strong support they have consistently shown towards public safety.”
“Our police department consistently does a fabulous job,” said Deputy Mayor Stephanie Murray. “Under Chief Webber’s direction, our men and women in blue are focused on community outreach and crime prevention as well as law enforcement. I can’t imagine a more community oriented police department.”
Community programs include child safety seat installations, police youth week camps, Project Plus, Rude Awakening, and the Law Enforcement Against Drugs program which utilizes The Too Good for Drugs curriculum in the township’s elementary schools. The Police Department also participated in its first National Night Out event, a movement that promotes police-community partnerships and neighborhood camaraderie to help make the town an even more caring and safe place to live.
“Our police department deserves all the kudos we can deliver and more,” Murray added, “but when talking about safety, we would be remiss if we didn’t acknowledge our over 600 volunteers in the Fire Department, EMS Squads and Community Emergency Response Team. These generous and dedicated men and women make an enormous difference in our community.”
“This national recognition is consistent with Middletown’s track record of excellence in all of our of municipal services,” Committeeman Tony Fiore said. “There is nothing more important that the safety of our families. Congratulations to Chief Weber and his entire team, and thank you to the hundreds of volunteers who work hard creating Middletown’s outstanding quality of life.”