U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Rural and Small Town Living
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 07-30-2012, 10:17 AM
 
Location: Keosauqua, Iowa
9,200 posts, read 17,058,364 times
Reputation: 12393

Advertisements

My wife pointed out yesterday that my chainsaw was setting outside. "I guess you're not worried about somebody stealing it" she said. I guess not, I tried to think of the last time I used it. Had to have been a month or more. I did take it in last night, though. Not because I'm afraid of having it stolen, but because I needed to sharpen the chain.

Friday night some bozo woke me up around midnight buzzing around town on a two-cycle ATV with a racing muffler. I called the sheriff, but I heard the perpetrator heading south toward Missouri before the deputy arrived. That's the kind of "crime" we mainly deal with in this small town.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 08-04-2012, 04:17 PM
 
Location: Western North Carolina
5,044 posts, read 8,033,418 times
Reputation: 10831
Quote:
Originally Posted by duster1979 View Post
My wife pointed out yesterday that my chainsaw was setting outside. "I guess you're not worried about somebody stealing it" she said. I guess not, I tried to think of the last time I used it. Had to have been a month or more. I did take it in last night, though. Not because I'm afraid of having it stolen, but because I needed to sharpen the chain.

Friday night some bozo woke me up around midnight buzzing around town on a two-cycle ATV with a racing muffler. I called the sheriff, but I heard the perpetrator heading south toward Missouri before the deputy arrived. That's the kind of "crime" we mainly deal with in this small town.
You're fortunate. That was about the same way it was in the small town I lived in out in Montana. Crime was almost laughable.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-04-2012, 06:19 PM
 
Location: Western Nebraskansas
2,707 posts, read 5,435,621 times
Reputation: 2415
Quote:
730 square miles, but a population of only 36,000 for the whole county. There are only 13 towns in the county, and the largest town/county seat is pop. 15,000.
This is sparsely populated??

We live in a county of 1000 square miles with 2000 people. And I've lived in counties considerably smaller. lol

To the original question: Yeah, crimes still occur. Thefts, to one degree or another, aren't rare.
In fact, my kids' school just made the front page of the county newspaper because all of the iPads (one per classroom) were just stolen last week. Certainly not a regular occurrence, but it follows a similar theft in the district 50 miles to the north...

Usually it's more along the lines of a car that was left with the windows open and someone's iPod disappears off the front seat.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-04-2012, 08:43 PM
 
5,879 posts, read 5,360,500 times
Reputation: 18002
I think there's going to be a difference in answers between "rural" areas and "small town" areas.

I know of many people who live on rural acreages who have been burgled/robbed (I forget the difference. I mean the kind without weapons where they come in when you're not home) several times. One man I knew had an amazing historic toy collection, and it was just decimated over time. No lock seemed to work for him. If you truly live completely rurally it's difficult to protect your property when you're not there.

But in small towns, where neighbors know one another well, there's enough oversight that crime seems to be minimal - except for domestic violence and alcolhol/drug fights. Most people where I live still leave their doors and cars unlocked. In fact, one evening I went inside leaving one of my car doors flat out OPEN and my garage door up, and forgot about it until the sight took me by surprise the next morning! No one had bothered anything. I was surprised no one closed the doors for me, though.

On the other hand, I've lived in two of the biggest cities in America and the only place I've ever been a victim of a crime was in a small town - my wallet was stolen out of my (unlocked) office at work. I'm sure it was a kid.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-06-2012, 12:38 PM
 
3 posts, read 3,421 times
Reputation: 10
There are a few anomalies, but if you look at crime stats, most small towns have a lower crime rate per 100,000 when compared to cities. So they have less crime because they have less people, but even when you factor this in, the crime rate is still better than cities.

The smaller the town, the more personal crime gets. People can't easily get away with crime because they will be recognized and caught because everyone knows everyone. And as others have said, people who know each other watch each others backs. The larger the city, the more anonymous you and your neighbor are and the less you are invested in each other, with a few exceptions.

There is no reason that cities couldn't work to improve this sense of community in individual neighborhoods, making each feel like their own small town. It would likely do wonders for the crime rate.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-06-2012, 01:08 PM
 
2,878 posts, read 3,927,056 times
Reputation: 3083
Quote:
Originally Posted by mettaliving View Post
There are a few anomalies, but if you look at crime stats, most small towns have a lower crime rate per 100,000 when compared to cities. So they have less crime because they have less people, but even when you factor this in, the crime rate is still better than cities.

The smaller the town, the more personal crime gets. People can't easily get away with crime because they will be recognized and caught because everyone knows everyone. And as others have said, people who know each other watch each others backs. The larger the city, the more anonymous you and your neighbor are and the less you are invested in each other, with a few exceptions.

There is no reason that cities couldn't work to improve this sense of community in individual neighborhoods, making each feel like their own small town. It would likely do wonders for the crime rate.
I have been unable to find a rule BUT it can also have to do with the state. Take New Mexico for example - most small towns (even ones with 4,000 people) have crime rates in the 420 (Tucumcari, only a few thousand people) to 1000 (Espanola) range!! Majority of towns like Taos, Silver City, Las Vegas NM etc. can be considered small and have their crime index well in the 500s.

I find Texas to be different from that - small towns tend to be cleaner. Wimberley is below national average (2600 people), so is San Marcos (and it has a huge university!) etc.

Florida is more similar in that respect to New Mexico, many small towns had high crime rates but there were also small towns with low crime rates.

OD
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-06-2012, 05:26 PM
 
12,685 posts, read 17,018,902 times
Reputation: 24558
Quote:
Originally Posted by ognend View Post
I have been unable to find a rule BUT it can also have to do with the state. Take New Mexico for example - most small towns (even ones with 4,000 people) have crime rates in the 420 (Tucumcari, only a few thousand people) to 1000 (Espanola) range!! Majority of towns like Taos, Silver City, Las Vegas NM etc. can be considered small and have their crime index well in the 500s.

I find Texas to be different from that - small towns tend to be cleaner. Wimberley is below national average (2600 people), so is San Marcos (and it has a huge university!) etc.

---
OD
You are right about many parts of New Mexico. As long as I can recall it's been that way in the State. However, rural west Texas, at least on the south plains, also has its share of crime. Two years after we bought this place, my front door was kicked down while I was gone. Some guns and other things were taken. This past June my neighbor (about a mile and a half away) was stabbed numerous times after he answered his door at 3:00 am in the morning to someone who claimed they were stuck in the mud in front of his house. (One of the very rare times we had mud.) That same afternoon my family was almost run down on the main highway as seemingly every law officer in three counties chased the perp down after they attempted to serve a warrant at his house in the nearby small town. They did catch him after the fool ran into a bar ditch east of Lubbock.

A lot of crime anywhere is based simply on opportunity. At times when I am gone, a criminal could drive into my rural place with a semi-truck and a 40' container and load for several days without being discovered. The last I heard about the stabbing was that the guy was a recent ex-con and the crime was racially motivated. I doubt we will ever know for sure. We have never heard anymore about the burglary but we were able to give the Sheriff's office serial numbers to everything that was taken. At any rate, I now maintain a 24/7 security surveillance systems around the house and barns and I keep small arms close at hand even when I am working outside. I am learning that many rural folks out here do the same thing.

Years ago as I left Maryland to return to Texas and New Mexico, I told my co-workers that I was returning to a place where private property that was not tied down with a big chain and a lock was not considered to be owned by anyone. I knew what I was coming back to but the worse places in free Texas beats any place in the nanny-State of Maryland.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-06-2012, 08:29 PM
 
2,878 posts, read 3,927,056 times
Reputation: 3083
Quote:
Originally Posted by High_Plains_Retired View Post
You are right about many parts of New Mexico. As long as I can recall it's been that way in the State. However, rural west Texas, at least on the south plains, also has its share of crime. Two years after we bought this place, my front door was kicked down while I was gone. Some guns and other things were taken. This past June my neighbor (about a mile and a half away) was stabbed numerous times after he answered his door at 3:00 am in the morning to someone who claimed they were stuck in the mud in front of his house. (One of the very rare times we had mud.) That same afternoon my family was almost run down on the main highway as seemingly every law officer in three counties chased the perp down after they attempted to serve a warrant at his house in the nearby small town. They did catch him after the fool ran into a bar ditch east of Lubbock.

A lot of crime anywhere is based simply on opportunity. At times when I am gone, a criminal could drive into my rural place with a semi-truck and a 40' container and load for several days without being discovered. The last I heard about the stabbing was that the guy was a recent ex-con and the crime was racially motivated. I doubt we will ever know for sure. We have never heard anymore about the burglary but we were able to give the Sheriff's office serial numbers to everything that was taken. At any rate, I now maintain a 24/7 security surveillance systems around the house and barns and I keep small arms close at hand even when I am working outside. I am learning that many rural folks out here do the same thing.

Years ago as I left Maryland to return to Texas and New Mexico, I told my co-workers that I was returning to a place where private property that was not tied down with a big chain and a lock was not considered to be owned by anyone. I knew what I was coming back to but the worse places in free Texas beats any place in the nanny-State of Maryland.
You are pretty much right about everything you said.

Except that Texas is free . No open carry for one and 96% of the state is private owned so unless you are lucky to own thousands of acres or live right next to Big Bend, you are not really free (to roam as you want at least)

NM is VERY rural so law enforcement may be just spread too thin. What surprised me is if you look at a tiny place like Tucumcari (population only a few thousand), crime index is 400+. Now, the crime is predominantly thefts and burglaries but if you happen to be home while burglarized, it can easily turn ugly. Espanola NM on the other hand is small but REALLY ugly crime wise. Same for Las Vegas NM which even has its projects. I found that even weirder too that a town of 20,000 would have projects. Anyways, I grew up in Eastern Europe where there was virtually no crime (all the killing is done in ethnic wars) so the concept of a violent village is just foreign to me... But then again a concept of a village where not everyone is a farmer is even stranger.

OD
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-06-2012, 10:31 PM
 
12,685 posts, read 17,018,902 times
Reputation: 24558
Quote:
Originally Posted by ognend View Post
You are pretty much right about everything you said.

Except that Texas is free . No open carry for one and 96% of the state is private owned so unless you are lucky to own thousands of acres or live right next to Big Bend, you are not really free (to roam as you want at least)

NM is VERY rural so law enforcement may be just spread too thin. What surprised me is if you look at a tiny place like Tucumcari (population only a few thousand), crime index is 400+. Now, the crime is predominantly thefts and burglaries but if you happen to be home while burglarized, it can easily turn ugly. Espanola NM on the other hand is small but REALLY ugly crime wise. Same for Las Vegas NM which even has its projects. I found that even weirder too that a town of 20,000 would have projects. Anyways, I grew up in Eastern Europe where there was virtually no crime (all the killing is done in ethnic wars) so the concept of a violent village is just foreign to me... But then again a concept of a village where not everyone is a farmer is even stranger.

OD
My families have been in Texas since before the Republic but I certainly see a lot wrong with my native state. I also don't like the fact that there is so little public land but, at my age, I can no longer climb the hills and mountains (in NM) that I used to anyway. My small 20-acre flat land west Texas farm is even getting to be a handful for me to handle anymore.

The places you have named are all in northern New Mexico. I have always preferred the eastern and southern areas of the State myself but recognize that areas like Red River, Questa, Eagles Nest and Cimarron are extremely beautiful. I do hear people say how bad the crime is getting in Clovis so it's probably all over the State anymore. The State has definitely changed since I first came out in 1968 but it has always had a reputation as a home for outlaws, the most famous of course being William H. Bonney or Billy the Kid. Many Texas and New Mexican families have outlaws and bandidos in their ancestry. My Texas families are no exception, e.g., The Conner Feud of Sabine County, Texas. Willis Jackson Conner was my great great grandfather.

Unlike Europe America is still relatively young and crimes are typically committed by the young. I've always thought that crime in America will drop as the nation ages. This is just a theory of mine that relates to aging populations and communities. Maybe so, maybe not.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 08-09-2012, 12:20 PM
 
Location: Kansas
19,185 posts, read 15,417,652 times
Reputation: 18283
This is what I learned: 1. Look at the poverty rate of the area not because poor people commit crimes but because people who can't pass a drug test end up on welfare instead of working 2. Look at the type of crimes committed and you'll see a lot of robberies/theft where drug dealers run wild and welfare and drugs can be an industry for a small town that really has nothing else. The locals will swear to you that crime isn't that bad but keep in mind that they have never actually compared it with anywhere else and they consider every quirk about their area to be "normal". You have no idea the kinds of things they think that everyone does or things that go on everywhere! I learned all this the hard way. Do your research like your life depended on it!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Rural and Small Town Living
Similar Threads
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:56 AM.

© 2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top