Orem ranked sixth in city safety


    By Lara Updike

    Orem is the sixth safest city in the United States according to data compiled by the FBI. Orem was also named the fourth safest city of it”s size, a population between 75,000 to 99,999, and the Orem-Provo area was named the twelfth safest metropolis in the nation.

    Orem”s citizens are responsible for their city”s low crime rate, said Doug Edwards, lieutenant for the Orem Police Department.

    “They”re family-oriented,” he said. “They try to teach good principles to their children, teach them to obey laws.”

    Also, he said, they”re willing to look out for their neighbors through neighborhood watch programs.

    The ranking is based on 371 cities” 2001 reports of crimes, meaning murders, rapes, robberies, burglaries, aggravated assaults and motor vehicle thefts. The Morgan Quitno Press published the ranks in a book Tuesday.

    Levi Sorenson, a Utah Valley State College student, said the rank means little to him. In his four years living in Provo and Orem, he has been the victim of several crimes, he said.

    He”s been attacked by a Tongan gang, had his bike stolen and his apartment robbed, all on separate occasions, he said.

    “I just think it”s a little naive to think nothing happens here,” he said. “It”s partially true because there”s no big crimes – there”s not murders or big gang problems or anything like that. But as for the smaller crimes, they still exist here.”

    Julie Lindville, also a UVSC student, moved from Seattle to the Utah last year. She said she used to worry about locking her car and hiding valuable objects so they couldn”t be seen through the window – until she had been in Provo a while.

    “I had a phobia about it (car theft) for a long time when I moved here, but that just doesn”t happen here,” she said. “And at school, you can just leave your backpack sitting around and go to the vending machine and don”t even have to worry about it.”

    However, Lindville said, she worries Orem and Provo residents get lulled into a sense of security that criminals can take advantage of.

    UVSC student and Orem resident Stephanie Call said she hasn”t been lulled.

    “I never leave my stuff anywhere, especially at UVSC because the people there just aren”t that trustworthy,” she said. “I wouldn”t do it at BYU either.”

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