America

What Kind Of Place Is Newtown, Conn.?

A flag is seen at half-staff along Main Street in Newtown, Conn., on Friday after a mass shooting that left at least 28 dead, including the suspected gunman. i i

A flag is seen at half-staff along Main Street in Newtown, Conn., on Friday after a mass shooting that left at least 28 dead, including the suspected gunman. Shannon Stapleton/Reuters/Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Shannon Stapleton/Reuters/Landov
A flag is seen at half-staff along Main Street in Newtown, Conn., on Friday after a mass shooting that left at least 28 dead, including the suspected gunman.

A flag is seen at half-staff along Main Street in Newtown, Conn., on Friday after a mass shooting that left at least 28 dead, including the suspected gunman.

Shannon Stapleton/Reuters/Landov

Newtown, Conn., the town where Friday's mass school shooting took place, is described on its website as a "scenic small town" 60 miles northeast of New York City, with a 110-foot flagpole that serves as an unofficial town symbol.

Newtown is bordered on the south by Easton and Redding, on the north by Bridgewater and Southbury, on the east by Oxford and Monroe, and on the west by Bethel and Brookfield. It is the fifth-largest town, areawise, in the state.

Newtown's population was 27,560 in 2010, according to the U.S. census. There were 9,459 households. Of those, 7,431 were family households, and 3,797 of those families had children under 18 years old.

The town operates four public elementary schools, including Sandy Hook, as well as an intermediate school, a middle school and a high school. The total enrollment was 5,510 in 2009, according to the school district's website.

The website Neighborhood Scout finds that Newtown is safer than 79 percent of cities and towns in the U.S. It rates the town fourth on a list of 100 safest cities in the U.S.

It found specifically that the violent-crime rate — 1 crime for every 1,000 residents — is "well below the national average of all communities of all population sizes."

In other words, according to the site, "Violent crimes such as assault, rape, murder and armed robbery happen less often in Newtown than in most of America."

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