Naperville, IL — The Safest City in the United States

Naperville, Illinois is considered to be 83% safer than other U.S. cities, with a total crime rate of 3.81 per 1,000 residents.

In a city with a population of just shy of 150,000 – that’s pretty safe!

These are just numbers and “hard” to truly grasp. In this article, we’ll break this down with more data and opinions.

  • The history of crimes in Naperville, IL
  • Which area in Naperville has the highest crime rate
  • The crime rate in Naperville vs Chicago
  • The reasons why Naperville is such a safe area.

Let’s get started!

Violent Crimes in Naperville, IL

naperville crime rates compared to chicago

According to the Naperville Police Department’s annual Crime Statistics, there were a total of 1,175 violent crimes committed in Naperville in 2022.

These crimes include:

  • Murder and manslaughter
  • Justified homicide
  • Unlawful restraint
  • Rape and sodomy
  • Fondling and criminal sexual abuse
  • Aggravated and simple assault
  • Intimidation

Violent crimes in Naperville are less than that of the state average.

According to, there are less than 2 violent crime incidents per 1,000 people every year.

Gun-Related Crimes in Naperville, IL

There were 148 weapon law violations in Naperville in 2022.

Gun-related crimes in Naperville, IL are less than that of the state average.

Car-Related Crimes in Naperville, IL

There were 410 motor vehicle-related crimes committed in Naperville in 2022.

These crimes included:

  • Theft from a motor vehicle
  • Theft of motor vehicle parts
  • Motor vehicle theft.

Car-related crimes in Naperville, IL are less than that of the state average.

Other types of Crimes in Naperville, IL

There were 2,446 other types of crime committed in Naperville during 2022.

These crimes included:

  • Robbery and burglary
  • Pocket-picking and purse snatching
  • Shoplifting
  • Theft from building
  • All other theft
  • Arson
  • Vandalism
  • etc.

Other types of crimes in Naperville are less than the state average.

According to, shoplifting is much more common in Naperville than crime involving guns or assault.

Which Part of Naperville Has the Highest Crime Rate?

According to, the area enclosed to the west by Illinois Route 59, N Aurora Rd, and W Ogden Ave has the highest overall crime rate in Naperville. 

Here is a diagram of the area:

Residents consider this area of the city to be more dangerous, and your chances of being a victim of crime could be 1 in 27.

The area enclosed to the east by Hobson Road, Naper Blvd, College Rd, and Green Trails Dr has the next highest crime rate.

On the flip side, residents of Naperville consider the southwest of the city to be the safest. Your chances of being a victim of crime are as low as 1 in 100!

Note: While yes statistically, these may be the “higher” crime rates, the rates are still VERY low. Just be aware that overall, Naperville is a VERY safe city!

Chicago vs Naperville Crime Rates

According to, the violent crime rate of Naperville when compared to Chicago is roughly one-fourth, while the property crime rate is just under half.

Chicago’s crime rate is significantly higher than that of the rest of the U.S., while Naperville’s is significantly lower.

In Chicago, the chances that you could be a victim of violent crime are 1 in 115, while in Naperville that drops to 1 in 1,639.

Additionally, in Chicago, your chances of becoming a victim of property crime are 1 in 42, while in Naperville it’s 1 in 313.

There are 379 crimes per square mile in Chicago and only 14 per square mile in Naperville.

Why Is Naperville the Safest City in the Chicago Area?

So why exactly is Naperville such a safe city to live in? Let’s investigate the reasons.

Low Crime Rates

When compared to the U.S. average, Naperville has significantly lower crime rates across all categories. 

The only exception to this was in 2020, when thefts were at an all-time high and increased significantly from 2019 (this is likely due to the effects of the pandemic).

Generally, however, Naperville is considered to be a low crime rate city, with polled residents stating that they feel “very safe”, and that police are both visible and highly responsive.

High Median Income

The estimated median household income in Naperville is much higher than that of the state of Illinois. This could be attributed to the fact that Naperville has a higher median age of the population as compared to the rest of Illinois.

Even though the pandemic saw a significant decrease in this income as compared to 2019 (and additionally, an increase in unemployment, which can likely be attributed to Covid-19), it’s still well above the rest of the state.

However, the cost of living in Naperville is considered to be expensive, especially when compared with the majority of U.S. cities – and even when compared with the rest of Illinois.

Those living in poverty in Naperville as of 2019 was 3.7%.

Highly-Educated Population

Naperville’s most common industries (as of 2019) were professional, scientific, and technical services, educational services, and health care.

Additionally, the most common occupations were management and computer specialists.

This points to a much more highly-educated population than the rest of Illinois. 

In fact, 97.2% of the population (aged 25 and over) in Naperville (as of 2019) had a high school diploma or higher, and 69.1% had a Bachelor’s degree or higher.

The Education Gini index, which measures inequality in education, was lower than in Illinois in general.

Well-Funded and Well-Staffed Police Department

naperville police office

While the number of full-time police in Naperville is significantly less than the rest of Illinois (at a rate of only 1.11 per 1,000 residents), the local government ensures that they are well-staffed and well-funded.

Next to electric and water utilities, Naperville spent the most on police protection in 2018 (around $38,442,000). This worked out to about $258.96 per resident.

When compared to Chicago, they only spent about 24 cents per resident on police protection (a total of $20,763,000 –  despite the fact that crime is significantly higher.

Effective Utilization of Technology and Data Analysis

Naperville is an open-data city. That means that all of their data is available to be analyzed for the future and to better their approach to running the city.

They even have a real-time Crime and Incident Map, which allows you to see what incidents police are responding to.

This in turn means that the Naperville government can effectively see what areas they need to inject more money into, including the use of updated technology.

As an example, the Naperville Police Department invested in a cloud-based Genetec Clearance system which allows them to handle digital evidence more efficiently. 

This has resulted in the department being able to both complete its investigations faster, as well as work more efficiently with the community.

Proactive Approach to Community Policing

In addition to the use of technology, the Naperville Police Department also patrols regularly and prides itself on how they can proactively serve their community.

This includes fast response times, as well as thorough investigation of crimes committed. They also listed the following in their January 2023 newsletter:

  • Policing with the Traffic Unit: In addition to responding to public-property traffic crashes, they practice “proactive enforcement”. They’re also able to inspect and install child safety seats.
  • Use of the Strategic Response Unit: This unit’s job is to deal with high crime areas, nuisance issues, and other issues of concern within the community.
  • Use of the Special Response Team: This team is specifically for tackling “critical incidents”.
  • Mental health assistance: There are also four clinicians who specialize in mental health issues (at a Master’s level) who are able to deal with short-term counseling, referrals, and crisis intervention.

Emphasis on Crime Prevention and Education

The Naperville police department has a particular focus on how education can help prevent crime.

In addition to their comprehensive website which gives residents information about their safety and tips on how to prevent crime, they also have a variety of community programs available.

You can even have a coffee with the Police Chief during a Chat with the Chief, a program that’s been running since 2016 and which happens twice a year. 

The program began as a way to encourage better community relationships and allow residents the chance to talk to the police chief and other senior staff.

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