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Is Hartland the safest city in the country?

Dec. 10, 2012

Neighborhood Scout, a real-estate neighborhood search, announced that Hartland was the No. 1 Safest City in the United States, but it looks like the organization needs to check its math.

"I would love to take credit for it," Chief Robert J. Rosch frankly said, "but their numbers are skewed."

Neighborhood Scout, managed by Location Inc., specializes in location analysis, demographic and school data information to help families, brokers and real-estate agents learn more about different neighborhoods. They compile crime, school and real estate reports online.

The crime report is supposed to be generated using reported crimes (burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, homicide, forcible rape, armed robbery and aggravated assault). That number is then divided by the population of the city and again divided by 1,000. This establishes a total crime rate per 1,000 population, which is used to compare every city on their list.

"I'm not sure where they got their population numbers from, but they think there are 80,000 people here," Rosch said.

Sure enough, Neighborhood Scout used a population of 80,847 people to calculate Hartland's unusually high score. The Village of Hartland had a population of 9,110 during the 2010 Census.

"We realized there was a population error in that community in Wisconsin from our staging server," said Andrew Schiller, founder and chief scientist for Location Inc.

Schiller has designed reports for The Wall Street Journal, CNN, Money Magazine, Parade Magazine, The New York Times and AOL. He has also conducted research and published with Harvard's Kennedy School of Government and Stanford University, according to the website.

Schilling said that Hartland should not have even been on the list for consideration because it only includes cities with populations of more than 25,000 people. Neighborhood Scout has also said that it will post a new, accurate report for Hartland next week.

The previous, inaccurate report boasted Hartland at a 97 percent crime index.

"The (new) crime index shows its still a nice, safe place … It actually should rank at an 84 crime index rating, meaning it's better than 84 percent of cities in the U.S., which is still really great," Schilling said.

annual report

Reported crime

0 Arson

17 Assault

9 Burglary

51 Criminal damage

0 Homicide

5 Vehicle theft

0 Robbery

9 Sexual assault

90 Theft

26 Worthless checks

562 Miscellaneous incidents

768 Total


175 Adult males arrested

53 Adult females arrested

48 juvenile males arrested

12 Juvenile females arrested

288 Total arrests

Miscellaneous Calls

10,053 Calls for service

123 Traffic accidents

2,948 Traffic contacts

1,409 Traffic citations

49 Drunken driving arrests

219 Ordinance citations

211 Parking citations

52 State prosecutions

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