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City of Park Ridge, Illinois is Named One of the Safest Communities in the Nation


             The Park Ridge Police Department was notified last week by representatives from Location, Inc. that Park Ridge was recently included in the Top 100 Safest Communities in the nation. Location, Inc. is a leading builder and source of location-based data and risk analysis information. Location, Inc. provides crime data and other information to and uses that information to identify the safest communities across the country. Park Ridge ranked 72nd this year and is included in the Top 100 along with 11 other Illinois communities. The study indicated that Park Ridge is considered to be safer than 68% of the cities across the nation with populations of 25,000 or more. The real estate research firm identified the nation’s 100 safest towns based on the number of property crimes and violent crimes per 1,000 residents reported in 2011.Those crimes include burglary, larceny-theft, vehicle theft, homicide, forcible rape, armed robbery and aggravated assault. The study indicated that the chance of becoming a victim of violent crime in Park Ridge is 1 in 1,637.
            This news came as the department announced our crime statistics for 2012. The overall crime rate for Park Ridge declined almost 4% in 2012. Last year, the overall crime rate declined 14% which means that the city’s overall crime rate has declined almost 18% over the past two years. In addition, this year’s rate represents the lowest rate in five years. Preliminary data suggests that, nationally, crime rates may be going up. According to the FBI, “Preliminary figures indicate that, as a whole, law enforcement agencies throughout the nation reported an increase of 1.9 percent in the number of violent crimes brought to their attention for the first 6 months of 2012 when compared with figures reported for the same time in 2011. The violent crime category includes murder, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault. The number of property crimes in the United States from January to June of 2012 increased 1.5 percent when compared with data from the same time period in 2011. Property crimes include burglary, larceny-theft, and motor vehicle theft.
“I am extremely proud of the men and women of the Park Ridge Police Department for their dedication and service” remarked Chief Frank Kaminski. “To see crime rates going down, locally, while they are increasing at a national level is a sign that we are making true progress”, he added. One of the notable areas of improvement is burglaries. The report shows that there was a 14% decrease in burglaries last year as well as a 29% increase in arrests for burglaries. “This is a trend we like to see”, stated Chief Kaminski.
Another significant area of improvement was in traffic safety. The totals indicate that over the past five years our traffic accidents responded to have declined by 23.6% while our total accident reports taken has declined by 21.8%. The results show that this last year was the lowest over the five year period. “These rates are extremely gratifying because of all of the time and resources the department devotes to improving traffic safety” remarked Chief Kaminski.
The Park Ridge Police Department remains committed to improving the safety and well being of all who live in or visit our community. “This information really affirms what the department is doing. It shows that a lot of our programs, including our P.A.C.T. (Police and Community Together), Beat Team Leader and our community policing philosophy have moved us forward” Chief Kaminski stated. “Given all of that, we don’t plan on hanging our hats on these numbers. Our department will continue to work to make improvements where we can until each of those crime categories say zero” concluded Chief Kaminski.

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