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Old 11-22-2010, 05:53 AM
 
543 posts, read 410,010 times
Reputation: 289
Thumbs down St. Louis Incorrectly Rated America's Most Dangerous City

St. Louis tops list of most dangerous US cities - Yahoo! News (http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20101122/ap_on_re_us/us_dangerous_cities - broken link)
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Old 11-22-2010, 06:04 AM
 
Location: Clayton, MO
1,517 posts, read 1,873,277 times
Reputation: 406
What a joke. St. Louis is not the most dangerous city. Not even close.

Quote:
Greg Scarbro, unit chief of the FBI's Uniform Crime Reporting Program, said the FBI also discourages using the data for these types of rankings.
Kara Bowlin, spokeswoman for St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay, said the city actually has been getting safer over the last few years. She said crime in St. Louis has gone down each year since 2007, and so far in 2010, St. Louis crime is down 7 percent.
Erica Van Ross, spokeswoman for the St. Louis Police Department, called the rankings irresponsible.
"Crime is based on a variety of factors. It's based on geography, it's based on poverty, it's based on the economy," Van Ross said.
"That is not to say that urban cities don't have challenges, because we do," Van Ross said. "But it's that it's irresponsible to use the data in this way."
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Old 11-22-2010, 06:22 AM
 
Location: Yes
2,663 posts, read 3,944,527 times
Reputation: 842
If the city and county ever decide to merge, STL won't ever have to deal with ranking perceptions again.
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Old 11-22-2010, 06:27 AM
 
Location: Clayton, MO
1,517 posts, read 1,873,277 times
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2009 Most Dangerous Metro's

#103 - St. Louis

That's all you need to know to realize how bogus this city vs city list is.
http://os.cqpress.com/citycrime/2009...9_Rank_Rev.pdf
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Old 11-22-2010, 07:08 AM
 
1,783 posts, read 1,904,884 times
Reputation: 1342
*yawn*

UMSL Criminologists were recently honored for a thorough breakdown and criticism of these rankings: Criminologists honored for criticism of annual city rankings « UMSL Newsroom

While there is no doubt that we have a high crime rate, to suggest that St. Louis is the most dangerous city, or even a top 10 most dangerous city is an absolute joke. The fact remains that violent crime is highly localized in a handful of dangerous neighborhood - just like every other city. The difference is our numbers aren't watered down like cities with a larger city limits that include some suburban areas. Of course if we had a higher population in the city proper that would also help water down crime numbers like it does in Baltimore and Washington DC.

No doubt the authors of this study realize this and mention it in their report. But the fact is that the headline will read that St. Louis is the most dangerous city in America. That's all most people will read, and it has a strong adverse effect on the entire St. Louis metro area, most of which is very safe. The study is put together to sensationalize crime, grab a headline and some publicity. And it does it at the cost of irreparable harm to the cities listed.

I don't want to discount the fact that the crime rate is unacceptably high in our city. I live here, work here, and spend the vast majority of my time and money here. While I haven't had even one remotely bad incident happen to me, I know others who have. I definitely take some precautions to ensure I do not become a victim. I think the best cure for crime is better education, stronger communities, more/better police, and more people. It is hard to get more people to move here when ridiculous studies like this come out.

Finally, as the violent crime rate is the one cited, the fact remains that even in America's "most dangerous city" you still have roughly an only 2% chance of being a victim of violent crime. I imagine that percentage is even lower if don't live in or frequent certain neighborhoods, and lower still if you don't sell drugs or join a gang. The average is roughly 0.4%. Crime is a very signficant issue in St. Louis that we should continue to address...but superfluous studies like this one are not helping.
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Old 11-22-2010, 07:23 AM
 
Location: South St Louis
3,766 posts, read 1,841,357 times
Reputation: 1818
We're number one! We're number one!
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Old 11-22-2010, 07:43 AM
 
Location: Volker, Kansas City, MO
12,062 posts, read 17,824,602 times
Reputation: 3596
Oh, is it that time of year again? Great.

St. Louis is set to have fewer muders in 2010 then they did in 2009. And they had fewer in 2009 than they did in 2008. This is not the St. Louis of the '70s and '80s (or even the '90s). This report just continues to perpetuate this antiquated idea that St. Louis is a burned out hell hole.

There are some terribly crime ridden and impoverished neighborhoods in St. Louis (as in all cities), and to ignore that would be counterproductive, but for those of us who've spent any significant time in St. Louis in the past decade, it is obviously completely undeserving of this "honor."

For those who say that when we merge with the county, we will no longer have this issue, that's very unlikely. I think it's completely possible that within the next few years, we could see the city become a part of the county, but there's very little possibility (or reason, for that matter) for the county and city to merge into one huge megacity.

You're seeing this become an issue in Kansas City with the upcoming earning tax vote. I have very little doubt that St. Louis city will handily pass the spring vote to keep the e-tax (the majority already voted no on the original proposition), but Kansas City is going to struggle.

There is a very anti-urban, much more conservative-leaning segment of the city limits north of the river, and they are going to require a great deal of coaxing to see the benefit of keeping the etax (they p[assed the initial MO proposition pretty handily). One can only hope that when they realize what will happen to their taxes and services were it to be repealed, they will vote sensically, but at a bare minimum it's going to require an expensive campaign.

So while common thought might be that the county has more to lose by joining the city and taking on all its propblems, the city, politically, also has very little reason to water down their political power with a more conservative base.
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Old 11-22-2010, 08:51 AM
 
Location: Old Hyde Park, Kansas City,MO
1,145 posts, read 1,032,168 times
Reputation: 531
I have been to St Louis about 7 times and have stayed downtown everytime and I have never once felt unsafe. I have walked around Washington Avenue at 2am near the Edward Jones Dome and it was perfectly fine, there are some shady folks in that area but it was very well lit and a nice walk back to my hotel. People in KC always tell me how much of a **** hole St Louis is but I have never seen it and really enjoy the city, the neighborhoods and the attractions, the arch is such a beautiful backdrop.
The City Museum should be getting more national recognition, its so awesome.
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Old 11-22-2010, 08:58 AM
 
Location: Chicago, IL
855 posts, read 1,540,066 times
Reputation: 1040
For what it's worth, I also stayed in a downtown hotel last time I was in St. Louis and I felt perfectly safe. Sure, there are neighborhoods to avoid but it's not like the whole city is a run down ghetto.

I felt much less safe while driving through the south side of Chicago than I did in St. Louis.
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Old 11-22-2010, 08:59 AM
 
Location: Kirkwood
2,323 posts, read 1,232,558 times
Reputation: 1163
Quote:
Originally Posted by brewcrew1000 View Post
I have been to St Louis about 7 times and have stayed downtown everytime and I have never once felt unsafe. I have walked around Washington Avenue at 2am near the Edward Jones Dome and it was perfectly fine, there are some shady folks in that area but it was very well lit and a nice walk back to my hotel. People in KC always tell me how much of a **** hole St Louis is but I have never seen it and really enjoy the city, the neighborhoods and the attractions, the arch is such a beautiful backdrop.
The City Museum should be getting more national recognition, its so awesome.
Thanks for the nice comments about St. Louis. I happen to also like KC, so that makes me a rarity.

There is high crime in certain areas of the city that drive these statistics, but it is not the downtown area or the other neighborhoods that are vibrant, such as the central west end, etc.

You really have a few fairly isolated areas with extremely high crime per capita. When you combine this with the overall population of the city not being that high you have these somewhat distorted overall figures. Tourists and visitors don't usually have any reason to visit the areas driving the crime statistics high. It's too bad for the good people trapped in those areas, but it is really pretty isolated, IMHO.

I would add that STL is really similar to KC in that regard as well. You obviously have some extremely high crime areas right around downtown KC (Troost, Independence, etc.) but KC spreads it over a larger population, so the per capita ranking looks better.
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