By: Jeremy Handel
With its cozy streets, growing downtown, and small-town feel, Woodruff is more than just a quaint little city in southern Spartanburg County; it’s also the safest city in South Carolina.
A recent study by Safewise, a company focused on home safety, reviewed crime data throughout the state to determine the safest cities. Based on the company’s criteria, Woodruff jumped 26 spots from last year to top the list as the state’s safest city.
“This is what we show up for every day. All of us strive to make Woodruff a better place for us and our children,” said Woodruff City Manager Lee Bailey. “I am really proud of our police department.”
Woodruff Police Chief Greg Ryan echoed Bailey’s remarks and credited the city and police department’s partnership with the residents and businesses in the city.
“The partnerships we have forged with community members and businesses has been essential to the overall success our agency has had in achieving this recognition,” Chief Ryan said.
According to Safewise, Woodruff’s climb to the safest city was due in part to a significant reduction in violent crime. The city’s violent crime rate dropped from 4.7 incidents per 1,000 people in 2019 to just 0.7 last year. Chief Ryan credits the efforts of the entire community for that improvement.
“As law enforcement officers, we can’t be everywhere all the time. In many cases, we rely on our community to bring information to us and assist us in investigating crimes,” he said. “I have found that those who live and work in this city are more willing to help law enforcement than anywhere else I have served, and it is because of this we are able to achieve such a recognition.”
Woodruff beat out Fort Mill for the top spot in the safest city ranking. Tega Cay, Mount Pleasant, and Bluffton rounded out the top five.
To view a list of the other cities in South Carolina listed in Safewise’s list visit https://www.safewise.com/blog/safest-cities-south-carolina/ .