LITTLE ELM (CBSDFW.COM) - A newly released FBI report has named Little Elm the safest city in Texas and the 18th safest city in the nation, among all cities with a population over 25,000 people. The report, conducted in 2011, assessed cities in terms of the number of violent and property crimes. Little Elm had the lowest number of combined crimes among all Texas cities.
The list of analyzed crimes includes burglary, larceny theft, motor vehicle theft, murder, forcible rape, armed robbery and aggravated assault.
The report takes the total number of these crimes and compares it to a city's population in order to develop a ranking. Little Elm received an overall score of 84, meaning that it is safer than 84 percent of all cities nationwide. Little Elm had just 14 violent crimes and 228 property crimes in the year of the report. It boasts a population of more than 30,000 people.
"A number of factors play into our town's excellent results," said the Little Elm Police Department's Chief Waylan Rhodes. "Certainly, the pride that homeowners have in their neighborhoods is important, resulting in reliable reporting of criminal or suspicious activity. Just as important, though, our police force is composed of dedicated, highly-trained personnel who strive to be at their best each and every day. And, of course, the unqualified support and commitment the department receives from the Town Council is essential to our success."
The city's police department staffs 36 full-time officers, three reserve officers, three staff members, six jailers and two animal control officers.
In addition to the police force, Rhodes pointed to neighborhood watch programs and other crime prevention tactics for helping improve Little Elm's safety rating. "The positive FBI report," Rhodes said, "gives us the incentive to continue to develop these crime prevention programs and ensure that we maintain and even improve our standing."