The most recent available data from the FBI indicates Evanston has more police offices per capita than other Illinois communities of similar size.

However, that date is from 2018, and the number of sworn officers on the Evanston force has been reduced significantly since then.

In the 2018 report Evanston was listed as having 160 sworn officers or 2.14 officers for every 1,000 residents.

For the 16 Illinois communities with a population between 50,000 and 100,000 the average was 1.64 officers per 1,000 residents.

The most-heavily policed towns in the group after Evanston were Oak Park and Decatur, which both had 2.05 officers for every 1,000 residents.

At the other end of the scale, Wheaton had 1.22, Tinley Park had 1.34, Arlington Heights had 1.40 and Champaign had 1.42.

With 149 officers on the force at the moment, Evanston currently has 1.99 officers for every 1,000 residents. Assuming no changes in staffing in the other communities, that would place Evanston third from the top on the police staffing list among these communities today.

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Bill Smith is the editor and publisher of Evanston Now.

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