The 10 Safest Cities In South Dakota For 2023

The safest cities in South Dakota are Sisseton and Brandon for 2023.

Several new cities moved into the safest places to call home in South Dakota for 2023.

Each year, we analyze the safest places to live in South Dakota, taking into account violent and property crimes per capita from the FBI's data. While your safety is secure in most of South Dakota's towns, property crime is quite prevalent. We suggest that you check out the most dangerous places in The Mount Rushmore State after you check out the safes.

But what's unsurprising is that South Dakota has super safe, cool places to live for every stage of life. For instance, North Sioux City is one of the safest places for college students, Vermillion is safe for singles, and don't overlook Brookings for professionals.

It's not lost on us, either, that some of South Dakota's safest are also some of their wealthiest. Having proper safety measures in place does require extra funds. And if a couple of extra dollars on your property tax means you can sleep well at night, it's worth it.

Want to know more about our methodology and where the safest places in South Dakota are located? Keep reading.

Here are the 10 safest cities to live in South Dakota for 2023:

  1. Sisseton (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  2. Brandon (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  3. Madison (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  4. Brookings (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  5. Tea (Homes For Sale)
  6. Canton (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  7. Mobridge (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  8. Lennox (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  9. Beresford (Photos | Homes For Sale)
  10. Vermillion (Photos | Homes For Sale)

What city is the safest place to live in South Dakota for 2023? According to the most recent FBI data, Sisseton is the safest place to live in The Mt. Rushmore State.

Check out the rest of the safe South Dakota cities. And if you don't find your favorite there, head to the bottom to see how your city ranked.

For more reading on safe places to live in and around South Dakota, check out:

The 10 Safest Cities In South Dakota For 2023

Sisseton, SD
Overall SnackAbility

Population: 2,392
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 83 (third safest)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 334 (safest)
More on Sisseton: Homes For Sale | Data | Detailed Crime Report

Sisseton is a little rodeo town located in the extreme northeast corner of Roberts County.

Sisseton has been holding strong on our top 10 list for the last couple of years. So, it's no surprise that they are our safest city in South Dakota.

Sisseton's slogan should be: "Where It's Happening". They have their own airport, four gun shops, and three boot stores. So, if safe, family friendly communities that are happenin', is your cup of tea, you better hurry because Sisseton's homes are sellin' like hotcakes.

Sisseton is one of those snowy towns. They average close to 50" of snow/year. According to their residents, the only dangers lurking in the shadows of this city might be the occasional snowball fight. Keep that snow slingin' to a minimum Sisseton, we wouldn't want you to tarnish that impeccable 8/10 safety rating.

Brandon, SD
Overall SnackAbility

Population: 10,297
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 67 (second safest)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 456 (third safest)
More on Brandon: Homes For Sale | Data | Detailed Crime Report

Welcome to Brandon, our number one safest city in South Dakota. It's so safe in this Sioux Falls-burb, that the wolves, coyotes, and bears are always howling and growling at the residents reminding them to get home before dark. Thanks furry friends!

Nestled along the Big Sioux River in the southeast corner of South Dakota's western border, Brandon offers a safe environment with small town charm that packs a big punch. Not literally, of course. No fighting happens here; that wouldn't be safe. Not to mention, there are a lot of hunters, here, if ya know what we mean.

With a little over 10,000 residents, the superb quality of life in this little village in Minnehahah County is the reason that it is our number one safest city in South Dakota for 2023. Yes, Brandon, you truly are "Building a Better Life".

Madison, SD
Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility

Population: 7,120
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 112 (fifth safest)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 407 (second safest)
More on Madison: Homes For Sale | Data | Detailed Crime Report

Plug in the flashing lights and slap a fluorescent orange safety jacket on this little city in southeastern Lake County and call them safe.

Our third safest city in South Dakota, Madison, is known for its scenic location, low taxes, and educational opportunities. after all, it is the home to the Dakota State Trojans. Now if "Trojans" doesn't scream safe, we give up.

This little gem of a city in the Mount Rushmore State is a family friendly, safe Sioux City-burb nestled between Madison Lake and Lake Herman. It boasts convenient restaurants and stores and an occasional rodeo or two. It's a great place to raise a family. Word on the street is that young professionals are starting to take notice and move their direction. So don't wait, because the word is out.

And if you love winter, you can get snow here as early as July. To best be safe, make sure you get the best snow tires, winter boots, and fleece jacket, because you're gonna need 'em.

Brookings, SD
Overall SnackAbility

Population: 25,088
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 107 (fourth safest)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 673 (seventh safest)
More on Brookings: Homes For Sale | Data | Detailed Crime Report

Next up is Green River. This little piece of heaven in the 697 scored an 8.5/10 on our snackability chart to become our fourth safest city in South Dakota.

Home to the second largest city in South Dakota, this is the place to be. There are a boatload of things to do and the residents have the money to safely enjoy life in the "Scoreboard Town." They have the state's Children's Museum, the Brookings Summer Arts Festival, and it is the home to a multiple manufacturing and agricultural companies. So it's not surprising that Brookings received an 8/10 job score and an 8.5/10 amenities score. Nice work Brookings!

Whether the residents are tailgating at the South Dakota State University Jackrabbits, sharing a beer at the Brookings Blizzard game, or sipping coffee at the local coffee shop, nothing says safe like a community that creates opportunities to get to know anything and everything about each other. Just make sure you take the trash out in proper attire because someone is always watching and you wouldn't want to become the talk of Sweetwater County.

Overall SnackAbility

Population: 6,739
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 163 (seventh safest)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 1,187 (tenth safest)
More on Tea: Homes For Sale | Data | Detailed Crime Report

A southeastern suburb of Sioux Falls, Tea ranks as the fifth safest city in South Dakota. Tea had only eight violent crimes in 2021, giving the city the seventh safest lowest rate in the state. Just be careful not to get poked in the eye while bird-watching at Waterfowl Park.

On top of being super safe, Tea also received a 9.5/10 on our overall snackability scale, meaning it's an awesome place to call home overall. In fact, Tea ranked as the second best place to live and the sixth best place to raise a family in South Dakota on our other lists.

Canton, SD
Overall SnackAbility

Population: 3,635
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 165 (eighth safest)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 962 (ninth safest)
More on Canton: Homes For Sale | Data | Detailed Crime Report

Welcome to our sixth safest city in South Dakota: Canton. This town in Lincoln County is home to the rolling foothills of the Sioux Valley. It is every outdoor enthusiasts dream with the Big Sioux River to the East, Newton Hills State Park to the South, and Lake Alvin to the North. Just remember to wear your helmet. Safety first, right?

Their snackability rating is off the charts: a whopping 6/10! Their job market scored an 8/10 and their safety rating an 8/10! It's like Barney Fife's Mayberry in the middle of the northern plains.

Mobridge, SD
Overall SnackAbility

Population: 3,364
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 208 (12th safest)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 505 (fifth safest)
More on Mobridge: Homes For Sale | Data | Detailed Crime Report

Lennox, SD
Overall SnackAbility

Population: 2,520
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 238 (14th safest)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 476 (fourth safest)
More on Lennox: Homes For Sale | Data | Detailed Crime Report

Beresford, SD
Overall SnackAbility

Population: 2,046
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 195 (11th safest)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 830 (eighth safest)
More on Beresford: Homes For Sale | Data

Vermillion, SD
Overall SnackAbility

Population: 11,088
Violent Crimes Per 100k: 153 (sixth safest)
Property Crimes Per 100k: 1,614 (15th safest)
More on Vermillion: Homes For Sale | Data | Detailed Crime Report

Like much of South Dakota, Vermillion sits in a rural area. However, it also serves as home of the University of South Dakota. You might think all those crazy kids might get into their share of trouble. Not in Vermillion. The community stands as the number 10 safest city in South Dakota.

Vermillion has a population of 11,088 residents. Even with these thousands of people, the town experienced just 179 property crimes in a year. This equals a per capita rate of 1,614/100k people. Violence is negligible as well. There were 17 such violations during the year, with 2 rapes and 15 aggravated assaults.

Located in the southern part of the state, a short drive from the Missouri River and the Nebraska border, Vermillion has a median income of $47920. The area also has a median home price of $169500 and an unemployment rate of 7.6.

Methodology: How we calculated the safest cities in South Dakota for 2023

Safest Cities in South Dakota Graph

While there are surveys and public polls on what cities in South Dakota are the safest, we wanted to rely on something other than speculation and opinion. Instead, we looked at the hard numbers from the FBI's most recent crime report in South Dakota.

Specifically, we analyzed the FBI's Uniform Crime Report, which summarizes the number of property and violent crimes in each city annually. We used two criteria:

  • Violent crimes per capita (murders, assaults, rapes, armed robberies)
  • Property crimes per capita (thefts, burglaries, motor vehicle thefts)

For example, there were 10 crimes committed in Sisseton, with a reported population of 2,392. That means the number of crimes per capita is 0.0042, which translates into a 1 in 239 chance of being the victim of a crime.

We only looked at South Dakota cities that have populations of more than 2,000. This filter left us with 29 of the biggest cities in South Dakota to rank.

We ranked each city for each criterion from 1 to 29 where 1 in any particular category is the safest.

Next, we averaged each place's two criteria to create a Safety Index. We crowned the place with the lowest overall Safety Score "The Safest Place In South Dakota," with any ties going to the bigger city.

The safest city in South Dakota, based on our criteria, is Sisseton. The most dangerous city in South Dakota? Chamberlain, where residents had a 1 in 25 chance of being the victim of a crime.

This article has been update for 2023. This report marks our sixth time ranking the safest places to live in South Dakota. All the data comes from the FBI's Crime In The USA 2021 report.

Richest Cities In South Dakota

Summary: The Safest Cities In The Mount Rushmore State

Looking at the data, you can tell that Sisseton is as safe as they come in South Dakota, according to science and data.

But as most South Dakota residents would agree, almost every place here has its safe and not safe parts. So just make sure you're informed ahead of time.

Here's a look at the most dangerous cities in South Dakota according to the data:

  1. Chamberlain
  2. Rapid City
  3. Sioux Falls
For more reading, check out:

Where Are The 10 Safest Cities In South Dakota For 2023?

Rank City Population Violent Crimes Per 100k Property Crimes Per 100k
1 Sisseton, SD 2,392 83 334
2 Brandon, SD 10,297 67 456
3 Madison, SD 7,120 112 407
4 Brookings, SD 25,088 107 673
5 Tea, SD 6,739 163 1,187
6 Canton, SD 3,635 165 962
7 Mobridge, SD 3,364 208 505
8 Lennox, SD 2,520 238 476
9 Beresford, SD 2,046 195 830
10 Vermillion, SD 11,088 153 1,614
11 Summerset, SD 2,769 36 2,094
12 Watertown, SD 22,383 223 1,344
13 North Sioux City, SD 2,975 168 1,882
14 Hot Springs, SD 3,479 402 546
15 Spearfish, SD 12,047 174 1,917
16 Huron, SD 13,504 355 1,251
17 Belle Fourche, SD 5,712 245 1,838
18 Winner, SD 2,773 252 1,622
19 Lead, SD 2,929 375 1,297
20 Pierre, SD 13,710 328 2,056
21 Yankton, SD 14,669 368 2,072
22 Flandreau, SD 2,288 611 1,529
23 Sturgis, SD 7,013 285 2,466
24 Mitchell, SD 15,741 444 2,128
25 Box Elder, SD 10,876 579 2,123
26 Aberdeen, SD 28,494 558 2,337
27 Sioux Falls, SD 191,508 538 2,895
28 Rapid City, SD 79,910 641 3,065
29 Chamberlain, SD 2,364 676 3,214

Breaking Down Crime In The Safest And Most Dangerous Cities In South Dakota

Safest Cities in South Dakota Breakdown

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn.

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