20 Cities in Maryland with the Most Improved Crime Rate

November 14, 2014

6. Hyattsville, MD

Hyattsville is one of the bigger Washington DC suburbs. With an array of historic buildings, its own arts district and more, it is a charming locality. One of its most disturbing issues in recent years is the fact that it shares a zip code with other high crime areas nearby, giving the city a bad reputation when it comes to crime. However, despite this negative, the city has put forward a valiant effort in order to reduce crime rates. The police department has worked hard in terms of community outreach with a crime prevention unit, community action team, operation safe streets and more and has made Hyattsville a much more inviting place to settle.

2007 Crime Rate: 125.00
2012 Crime Rate: 71.50
42.80% Decrease In Crime

7. New Carrollton, MD

Sitting just 12 miles east of the city, New Carrollton is a medium-sized suburb of the nation’s capitol. It has easy access to the city via the Washington Metro. That comes as a mixed blessing as it also means it is quite easy and accessible for criminals to get to New Carrollton. The local police department in recent years has been striving to lower the crime rate through initiatives such as safety alerts, community events to increase connection with locals, community policing and more. These efforts have paid off thank to a good solid plan.

2007 Crime Rate: 32.88
2012 Crime Rate: 19.57
40.49% Decrease In Crime

8. Aberdeen, MD

Aberdeen is located in the northeast portion of the state, just 30 miles from Baltimore. On the banks of the Chesapeake Bay, this small city is a haven of small town life in the metropolitan area. The police department in Aberdeen works in conjunction with departments from neighboring towns to deliver the best in protection to its residents. A focus on crime prevention and community involvement has led to increasing the visibility of the force in town and in reducing the crime rate there.

2007 Crime Rate: 57.59
2012 Crime Rate: 35.44
38.46% Decrease In Crime

9. Laurel, MD

Laurel is a large suburb located between Baltimore and Washington, DC. While originally a mill town, it went on to quickly become a commuter town. It is today primarily a residential community. Located on the Patuxent River, it offers an impressive quality of life to residents there. A variety of education and safety programs, anonymous tip lines, community involvement through volunteering, ride-a-longs, the Citizen’s Police Academy, specialized patrols and the Neighborhood Watch Program have all worked for the good of Laurel to effectively reduce its crime rate significantly.

2007 Crime Rate: 59.59
2012 Crime Rate: 36.93
38.03% Decrease In Crime

10. Easton, MD

Easton is located on the eastern side of the state, east of the Chesapeake Bay, in the inland part of Talbot County. The police force of this medium sized town encourages citizen involvement with tip lines and neighborhood associations. Regularly publishing safety tips helps to keep the residents of this community on its toes when it comes to crime. Listed as the 8th best small town in the country, the local police department is working hard to keep its crime rate down by focusing on a positive relationship with citizens.

2007 Crime Rate: 47.51
2012 Crime Rate: 31.17
34.40% Decrease In Crime

11. District Heights, MD

District Heights is a tiny suburb of Washington, DC, and is less than 10 miles from the city. Much of this community’s crime issues are the result of spillover from its neighbor. However, a tidy reduction of the crime rate by one-third has come about over the five year span studied. Multiple programs have laid the groundwork for this change. A sophisticated communication system alerts residents of information they need to know to stay safe. Community policing efforts have led to greater cooperation between police and residents. Tips on staying safe and preventing crime are readily shared with the community. In addition, the District Heights Police Department works hand in hand with the Prince George’s Sheriff’s Office, the Prince George’s County Police Department and other nearby police forces to provide mutual assistance. This ensures that no matter what arises, it can be handled.

2007 Crime Rate: 38.86
2012 Crime Rate: 26.23
32.51% Decrease In Crime

12. Bladensburg, MD

Bladensburg is yet another small suburb of DC, located in Prince George’s County, less than 9 miles from the city. It has seen its share of violent and property crimes but have also gotten them under control, effecting an almost 33% decrease in crime. The police force serving the area goes out of its way to be a visible presence in order to deter crime. Its efforts to work with the community have paid off with lower crime rates and increased levels of security for residents of the town.

2007 Crime Rate: 88.93
2012 Crime Rate: 60.29
32.21% Decrease In Crime

13. Salisbury, MD

Salisbury is on the southeast side of the state near the Delaware border. It is convenient to several cities, as it is less than 135 miles to Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, Wilmington and Norfolk. With the convenience of proximity comes the risk of higher crime rates. Despite having less than 30,000 people in 2007, it had property crime incidences that rivaled cities double its size. Its efforts at crime reduction have revolved around programs such as youth crime prevention, community watch, Crime Stoppers and community education.

2007 Crime Rate: 104.34
2012 Crime Rate: 72.29
30.71% Decrease In Crime

14. Taneytown, MD

Tiny Taneytown in north central Maryland is on the border to Pennsylvania and is a very old town, having been founded in the mid-1700s. Despite having a very low rate of violent crime, its property crime rates have been through the roof. The dedication of the town’s police force has been instrumental in reducing that rate. Through Community Action Groups that have town residents working in conjunction with professional police officers, and a commitment to continued training and the acquisition of new technology, Taneytown is being protected from crime as well as any municipality in the state.

2007 Crime Rate: 22.59
2012 Crime Rate: 15.88
29.71% Decrease In Crime

15. Takoma Park, MD

Takoma Park is located in central Maryland, just north of Washington, DC and is a suburb of the nation’s capital. It is another community that gets its crime problems from its proximity to DC. The Takoma Park police department has instituted a community alert system to ensure that residents know when to be extra vigilant. It also encourages reporting of crimes through anonymous reporting lines. In order to take back its streets, it set up task forces focusing on burglary and robbery, including plainclothes patrols. The vigilant efforts have helped to make Takoma Park a much safer place to live.

2007 Crime Rate: 44.77
2012 Crime Rate: 32.30
27.86% Decrease In Crime

16. Mount Rainier, MD

Mount Rainier is a historic community in Prince George’s county that is a suburb of Washington, DC, having started as a streetcar suburb. Today it is also known for its impressive arts district. The town’s property and violent crime rate were extremely high in 2007. However, by 2012, the rates had gone down more than 25%. This is largely due to citizen involvement and open communication between the police force and residents.

2007 Crime Rate: 57.62
2012 Crime Rate: 42.51
26.23% Decrease In Crime

17. Greenbelt, MD

Greenbelt is another suburb of Washington, DC and has its own historic district. It was originally a planned community meant to stand out from so many others in a variety of ways. However, it became much like other DC suburbs, plagued by crime and a busy lifestyle. The Greenbelt Police Department strives to create an exceptionally safe environment for residents and has succeeded in reducing the crime rate significantly. Its patrols of businesses and schools, crime prevention efforts and active community involvement have made Greenbelt a much safer place to live and do business.

2007 Crime Rate: 62.47
2012 Crime Rate: 48.92
21.69% Decrease In Crime

18. Thurmont, MD

Thurmont, located about 45 minutes north of DC, in the Catoctin Mountains is known for being the location of Camp David. This charming small town just outside of Frederick has seen a size-able drop in its crime rate over the 5 year time span analyzed. The Thurmont Police Department has worked hard to ensure that the town is safe for residents and visitors by working in conjunction with concerned residents and implementing a variety of community outreach programs meant to educate and help prevent crime. Residential house checks, ride along programs and other initiatives help to keep this mountainside town safe.

2007 Crime Rate: 11.65
2012 Crime Rate: 9.18
21.26% Decrease In Crime

19. Bel Air, MD

Bel Air, located in the northeast inland part of the state, is the hub of Harford County. Its historic district and clean neighborhoods are appealing to residents and visitors. However the crime rate was at an alarming level in 2007. The town’s full service police department has since made huge strides in reducing the crime rate, especially the violent crime rate. Its community alert system helps to ensure the public safety of the community alerting them of lurking dangers. The force also has members who take part in specialize task forces and teams that work to serve the entire area, for improved responsiveness in this part of the state.

2007 Crime Rate: 47.95
2012 Crime Rate: 39.47
17.67% Decrease In Crime

20. Havre de Grace, MD

Havre de Grace in the northeast corner of the state is at the head of the Chesapeake Bay and the mouth of the Susquehanna River. It is known for its iconic lighthouse and for being the decoy capitol of the world. It also boasts being included in the 2014 Smithsonian magazine list of the country’s 20 best small towns. In recent years Havre de Grace decided to crack down on crime, practically slashing the violent crime rate in the town in half over a 5 year span. The full service police department now works with the community and with neighboring law enforcement to deliver the very best protection possible for its residents. Through community policing, gang resistance programs and education programs, Havre de Grace is now safer than ever.

2007 Crime Rate: 35.04
2012 Crime Rate: 30.23
13.74% Decrease In Crime

A few other cities that just missed our list include Hagerstown, Frederick, Cambridge and Baltimore, all of which have experienced drops in crime rates.

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20 Most Improved Cities in Maryland

Disclaimer: To improve the accuracy and usefulness of our list, we chose to exclude small communities with populations below 5,000 in our rankings.
Our rankings are determined by national crime statistics published by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Our rankings are only as accurate as the local population and crime statistics officially released by the FBI.

20 Most Improved Cities in Maryland

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