Known for manufacturing musical instruments, firefighting equipment and recreational vehicles, Elkhart, IN is a small town with low housing costs and a nearby college town. It has a slightly shorter than average commute time as well as a relatively low cost of living, but also a much higher than average crime rate. Because of this, it may be beneficial to look into getting some type of burglar alarm if you live in the area.
The overall crime rate in Elkhart is actually 95 percent higher than the U.S. average, making it so there’s a 1 in 18 chance that a resident of the city will be a victim of some type of crime in any given year. It’s only safer than 4 percent of other cities in the country. The good news is that crime decreased by 2 percent between 2014 and 2015. There are about 40.56 crimes per 1,000 residents each year in Elkhart. Measured another way, there are 119 crimes per square mile, which is way more than the national average of 32 crimes per square mile.
The violent crime rate is particularly high in Elkhart. There are 14.77 violent crimes per 1,000 residents in any given year, which is almost three times the national average of 3.8 violent crimes per 1,000 residents. The rates are higher for every type of violent crime, including murder, rape and robbery, but especially high when it comes to assaults, with 11.75 per 1,000 residents each year compared to a national average of 2.38 per 1,000 residents per year. Someone living in Elkhart has a 1 in 68 chance of becoming a victim of some type of violent crime in any given year. While most people tend to think of security systems as mainly useful for reducing the risk of being a victim of property crime, these systems can also help limit the risk of being a victim of violent crime in your own home. Although most burglaries are committed during the daylight hours when people are typically away from home, this isn’t always the case. About 27 percent of the time when a burglary is committed when a resident is at home it involves some type of violent crime, such as rape or assault.
The property crime rate in Elkhart is also much higher than the national average of 24.9 crimes per 1,000 residents at 40.56 crimes per 1,000 residents each year. Elkhart has the 6th highest burglary rate in Indiana, with a burglary rate that’s almost double the national average. While thefts are the most common type of crime in the city, making up 51 percent of all crimes committed, burglaries make up an additional 21 percent of crimes. Consider setting up a neighborhood watch if your neighborhood doesn’t already have one, as this can limit the risk of burglaries by an extra 17 percent. Having a monitored alarm system reduces the risk by about one-third, especially if you put up the signs and stickers given to you by the monitoring company so it’s clear to burglars that the home has an alarm system. Other steps that can be helpful include making sure to lock all doors and windows, installing motion-activated lights near all entrances and clearing away any bushes or tree branches near the home that could provide cover to potential burglars. Burglars never know if a dog is likely to bite them, so they’re likely to avoid homes with dogs. Having a strong front door that has a deep-set deadbolt lock can also be helpful, as the front door is the most common point of entry for burglars.
As in any city, there are some areas of Elkhart that are safer than others. You may want to avoid living in the neighborhoods of South Main Street/Prairie Street and the City Center, as these have the highest crime rates. Instead, consider West County Line Road/County Road 6, Dunlap and Jamestown. Those looking to move to a safer area nearby may want to consider Nappanee, Cassopolis or Bremen, all of which are much safer than Elkhart. Moving to one of these towns is one of the best ways to greatly reduce your risk of being a victim of some type of crime.
There are 141 law enforcement employees in Elkhart, making it so there is a ratio of about 2.7 police officers per 1,000 residents. This is a bit higher than the average for Indiana of 2.4 officers per 1,000 residents but a bit lower than the national average of 3.3 officers per 1,000 residents. Given the high crime rate, this lower than the average number of police officers may be interfering with response times and case clearance rates. The average clearance rate for the police department is about 22 percent, which is a bit lower than the national average of 28 percent. However, the burglary clearance rate is about average at approximately 12 percent. Increase your chances of getting any potential burglaries at your home solved and your belongings returned to you by investing in a video-verified alarm system that sends a video to the monitoring company of whatever set off the alarm. This means only real burglaries are passed on to the police for a response, which means they’ll be faster to respond to the call. Unverified alarms tend to be very low priority because more than 95 percent of them turn out to be false alarms.