Williams Lake ranked ninth on ‘Canada’s Most Dangerous Places’ list by Maclean’s Magazine

Williams Lake ranked ninth on ‘Canada’s Most Dangerous Places’ list by Maclean’s Magazine

Williams Lake has once again cracked the top 10 of Maclean’s Magazine’s annual Canada’s Most Dangerous Places to Live list.

Based on statistics of violent crimes committed in the city, Williams Lake ranked ninth highest out of 237 communities in the country, despite receiving a lower violent crime severity index than in 2018 where Williams Lake ranked seventh in the nation.

Quesnel, meanwhile, ranked fifth on the list.

According to Maclean’s Magazine’s annual Crime Severity Index (CSI) report released this week, Williams Lake saw an increase in 2019 from 2018 in drug offences including impaired driving, cannabis trafficking, cocaine trafficking and other controlled drug trafficking or production, sexual assaults and fraud.

READ MORE: Williams Lake named fourth ‘most dangerous’ in Canada

Homicides, assaults, firearms offences, robberies, breaking and entering and youth criminal justice act offences, meanwhile, were down from 2018.

The CSI data is compiled from within the actual City of Williams Lake boundaries.

Williams Lake ranked ninth on ‘Canada’s Most Dangerous Places’ list by Maclean’s Magazine

The ranking has long been a thorn in the side of Williams Lake’s politicians, who have argued for better representation of crime statistics based on the city and its outlying areas for population.

In March of 2019, the city’s Chief Administrative Officer Milo Macdonald said the crime severity index for Williams Lake is artificially attributing the crime rate of roughly 30,000 people to a population of around 10,000 people. He added while those areas are outside of the political boundaries of Williams Lake, they are functionally still part of the community.

At this week’s city council meeting, prior to the release of the rankings, council pushed for GPS monitoring on prolific and domestic violent offenders.

The actual rates listed in the report are as follows:

Homicide, Assault and Bodily Harm

• Homicide, actual incidents: 1

• Homicide rate (incidents per 100,000 population): 8.84 (Canada avg.: 1.76)

• Assault, actual incidents: 129

• Assault rate (incidents per 100,000 population): 1,140.68 (Canada avg.: 457.01)

• Sexual assault, actual incidents: 27

• Sexual assault rate (incidents per 100,000 population): 238.75 (Canada avg.: 75.89)

• Firearms offences, actual incidents: 2

• Firearms offences rate (incidents per 100,000 population): 17.69 (Canada avg.: 7.58)

Theft and Property Crime

• Robbery, actual incidents: 19

• Robbery rate (incidents per 100,000 population): 168.01 (Canada avg.: 60.58)

• Breaking and entering, actual incidents: 98

• Breaking and entering rate (incidents per 100,000 populations): 866.57 (Canada avg.: 431.24)

• Fraud, actual incidents: 95

• Fraud rate (incidents per 100,000 population): 840.04 (Canada avg.: 349.2)

Drug Offences

• Impaired driving, actual incidents: 61

• Impaired driving rate (incidents per 100,000 population): 539.39 (Canada avg.: 190.49)

• Cannabis trafficking or production, actual incidents: 8

• Cannabis trafficking or production rate (incidents per 100,000 population): 70.74 (Canada avg.: 22.5)

• Cocaine trafficking or production, actual incidents: 11

• Cocaine trafficking or production rate (incidents per 100,00 population): 97.27 (Canada avg.: 20.03)

• Other controlled drugs, trafficking or production, actual incidents: 5

• Other controlled drugs, trafficking or production rate (incidents per 100,000 population): 44.1 (Canada avg.: 31.58)

Youth Crime

• Youth Criminal Justice Act offences, actual incidents: 1

• Youth Criminal Justice Act offences rate (incidents per 100,000 population): 8.84 (Canada avg.: 13.01)

What is the CSI?

According to Statistics Canada (StatsCan), the Crime Severity Index tracks changes in the severity of police-reported crime.

StatsCan takes into consideration the number of crimes as well as the seriousness of those crimes to generate the CSI.

To do this, crimes are weighted according to their severity – more serious crimes are assigned higher weights, less serious offences lower weights. For example, a murder would receive a weight 1,000 times higher than a case of shoplifting.

READ MORE: Crime severity index sees Williams Lake seventh place

The weight consists of two parts – the number of people convicted and sentenced to time in prison, multiplied by the average time they spend in prison.

Each crime receives the same weight regardless of the specific outcome of any individual case – for example, all robberies reported by police carry the same weight in the CSI. The weights are calculated using the five most recent years of available sentencing data.

To finally calculate the CSI, the number of crimes is multiplied by the weight for that crime, the final figure divided by the corresponding population total. To make the CSI easier to interpret, it is standardized to 100 for Canada.

Do you have a comment about this story? email:

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Interior Health reported 33 new COVID-19 cases on March 5. (Black Press Files)
Interior Health reports 33 new COVID-19 cases on March 5

Over 300,000 vaccine doses have been administered provincewide.

The wind has been gusting Friday, March 5 in Williams Lake with the risk of a thunderstorm in the forecast for later in the afternoon. (Angie Mindus photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
More than 500 customers in Cariboo without power, risk of thunderstorm Friday afternoon

The BC Hydro map is adding more power outages as the afternoon unfolds

Many members of the Williams Lake Cross Country Ski Club (pictured) have teamed up with the Cariboo Chilcotin Conservation Society to host a free ski in celebration of World Water Day. (Patrick Davies photo - Black Press Media)
Conservation society, cross country ski club, celebrate World Water Day with free ski March 6

The free ski will be from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday, March 6 at Bull Mountain

International Women’s Day is March 8. (Internationalwomensday.com)
International Women’s Day 2021: #choosetochallenge

International Women’s Day is marked annually on March 8

The OT Timber Frames Ltd. crew of Wacey MacDonald (from left), Sean Empey, Josh Douglas, Kurt Leuenberger, Ruedi Baumann, Simon Gansner, Annie Murray (in front) and Josie the dog stand in front of a newly constructed timber frame outdoor classroom for the 150 Mile House Elementary School. (Photo submitted)
Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C. on the COVID-19 situation. (B.C. government)
Dr. Bonnie Henry predicts a ‘post-pandemic world’ for B.C. this summer

‘Extending this second dose provides very high real-world protection to more people, sooner’

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Malawian police guard AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccines after the shipment arrived in Lilongwe, Malawi, Friday March 5, 2021. Canada is expecting its first shipments of AstraZeneca vaccine next week. (Associated Press/Thoko Chikondi)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 cases climb to 634 Friday, four more deaths

Currently 255 people in hospital, 66 in intensive care

A crashed helicopter is seen near Mt. Gardner on Bowen Island on Friday March 5, 2021. Two people were taken to hospital in serious but stable condition after the crash. (Irene Paulus/contributed)
2 people in serious condition after helicopter goes down on Bowen Island

Unclear how many passengers aboard and unclear where the helicopter was going

Surrey Pretrial in Newton. (Photo: Tom Zytaruk)
B.C. transgender inmate to get human rights hearing after being held in mostly male jail

B.C. Human Rights Tribunal member Amber Prince on March 3 dismissed the pretrial’s application to have Makayla Sandve’s complaint dismissed

Supporters rally outside court as Pastor James Coates of GraceLife Church is in court to appeal bail conditions, after he was arrested for holding day services in violation of COVID-19 rules, in Edmonton, Alta., on Thursday March 4, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
‘Law remains valid:’ Pastor accused of violating health orders to remain in jail

The Justice Centre for Constitutional Freedoms is representing the pastor

The Netflix logo on an iPhone. B.C. delayed imposing sales tax on digital services and sweetened carbonated beverages as part of its response to COVID-19. Those taxes take effect April 1, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, Matt Rourke
B.C. applies 7% sales tax on streaming, vaping, sweet drinks April 1

Measures from 2020 budget were delayed due to COVID-19

Chief Don Tom of the Tsartlip First Nation was outraged after Green MLA Adam Olsen revealed on social media that the community had been experiencing a COVID-19 outbreak – a fact the First Nation had chosen to keep private to avoid racist backlash as experienced by the Cowichan Tribes when an outbreak was declared there in January. (Black Press Media file photo)
B.C. First Nation ‘outraged’ after Green MLA reveals COVID-19 outbreak

Tsartlip First Nation chief shares concerns about racist backlash, MLA apologizes

A lawyer wears a face mask and gloves to curb the spread of COVID-19 while waiting to enter B.C. Supreme Court, in Vancouver, B.C., Friday, Aug. 28, 2020. British Columbia’s highest court has sided with the land owner in a dispute over public access to public land. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. high court finds in favour of large landowner in fight over access to pair of lakes

The Nicola Valley Fish and Game Club launched legal action after the cattle company blocked road and trail access

Most Read