South Dakota Crime Rates


Because of its proximity to ultra safe North Dakota, one might be tempted to think that South Dakota is just as safe. However, such a belief is simply not correct. In fact, many crimes occur in this sparsely populated state. Take, for example, the high rate of rape (70 per 1,000 people). No matter the reason for the difference between the two states, South Dakotans should be alert and aware of the crimes that are happening not far from their backyards. SEE ALSO: North Dakota Crime Rates

Crime Trends In South Dakota

In 2011, 40 percent of crimes in South Dakota occurred in a home. There was also an 18 percent increase in drug-related arrests, and over 5,700 DUIs. Per violent crimes, there were 15 murders, but hundreds of rapes and assaults. In most categories, crime was down in 2011; however, robberies were up by 8 percent and rapes by over 28 percent. The jump in rape cases in recent years was staggering, and there is no definite reason for it. Some suggest that South Dakota’s geography is the problem, with a huge rural population that can be difficult to patrol, or the large number of Indian reservations that report in to the state’s crime statistics. Others point to the harsh legislation regarding statutory rape in South Dakota. Regardless, the uptick in rape cases is disconcerting at best and certainly requires further federal investigation. SEE ALSO: 3 Essential Tips For College Dorm Safety And Security

Best And Worst Of South Dakota

Brookings and Vermillion are the safest small cities in South Dakota, with populations over 10,000 and four and seven violent crimes, total, respectively. That said, the rest of the top five of South Dakota have five or less violent crimes each, and include Sturgis, Madison and Brandon. That’s right; even that rough-and-tumble biker haven Sturgis is considered among South Dakota’s safest. Sioux Falls is the least safe city in South Dakota, with a population of 160,000 and nearly 500 violent crimes. Sioux Falls is followed closely by Rapid City, with over 400 violent crimes, though only two and three murders each. There’s a significant drop in the bottom three, including Watertown, Aberdeen and Pierre, with 60, 63 and 26 violent crimes respectively. No matter where you live, it is important to protect those you love. Click here to find out more about plans and pricing for home security in your area.
Date of original publication:
Updated on: November 10, 2015

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