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Old 11-10-2013, 10:33 AM
 
320 posts, read 611,577 times
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Then why is the index crime rate down to levels not seen since the mid 60s? Why is the homicide RATE consistently lower than it was in the 70s, 80s, or 90s?

By the police officer's logic, everyone should abandon ship in St. Louis in spite of everything great that's happening in the city. By the police officer's logic, it's a "liberal" problem, which is also stupid. The political problem in STL is strictly a white/black scapegoating and mutual lack of trust problem, case closed, period.
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Old 11-10-2013, 10:43 AM
 
Location: St. Louis
7,444 posts, read 7,028,973 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by STLviaMSP View Post
Then why is the index crime rate down to levels not seen since the mid 60s? Why is the homicide RATE consistently lower than it was in the 70s, 80s, or 90s?

By the police officer's logic, everyone should abandon ship in St. Louis in spite of everything great that's happening in the city. By the police officer's logic, it's a "liberal" problem, which is also stupid. The political problem in STL is strictly a white/black scapegoating and mutual lack of trust problem, case closed, period.

It's not his "logic," it's his observations based on personal experience. People keep telling me crime is down but reading the papers and watching the news I see violent crime spreading to parts of the city you didn't used to see it. Assuming he's legit, he's now the 3rd current or former city cop whose told me basically the same thing - and all he said was there is crime and it's not limited to north St. Louis.

And of course it's not limited to St. Louis - I'm reading about this in most of our major metros, including your Twin Cities.

And having said all that - I don't fear going into the city - I just think we can be honest about crime and don't have to pretend it doesn't exist.
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Old 11-10-2013, 11:13 AM
 
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When using personal observations you need to understand how biases will affect memory and reporting. People call 911 to report a crime not to invite a policeman over for coffee and a chat. Because of that policeman tend to only see one side of the issue. In addition, people tend to remember items more if they are unusual in nature or support an already existing belief. So the officer is much more likely to remember a crime occurring in a "good" neighborhood than the 20 crimes he worked on in the hood.

A good example of personal experience providing incorrect information is the "more births during a full moon myth". Many nurses will swear that there are more births during a full moon that other times of the moon. Yet the data shows no connection.

Also neighbors change over time. As the homes age, the population mix also changes. Many of the areas that are now considered high crime districts, were at one point luxury or middle case homes.

When it comes down to something like crime, it's better to look at the numbers and not personal experience. Also, crime is not evenly distributed across the city. A crime rate of 500 per 100,000 does not mean that every person has a 0.5% chance of being involved, it means if you select a person at random the chance of that person being a victim of a crime is 0.5% on average. In some areas your chance of being a victim is 10% and in others it is 0.025%. On average that works out to 0.5%.
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Old 11-10-2013, 11:17 AM
 
3,618 posts, read 3,060,415 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MUTGR View Post
Yes, so we discount what a city cop has to say about crime in the city. I can't think of a better expert on crime in the city of St. Louis than a city cop.

He wasn't offering his opinion on crime in St.Louis versus Chicago or any other city. And his point is well taken - there is crime and it's not limited to North St. Louis.

Heck, we are seeing more in the county too.
I would discount what this cop has to say about crime, especially since he has only made one post on this message board, and he obviously hasn't spent much time in any other major city other than St. Louis.

Plus, I am annoyed by the insinuation that people need to be fearful when visiting places like the St. Louis Arch or Forest Park. It's fine to exercise vigilance, but give me a break. The fear element that is pushed by certain factions in our society needs to be discouraged, not encouraged, in my opinion. Put away the gun. Undo the deadbolts on your door. Pop a valium. Take your wife or girlfriend out for a night on the town and enjoy a nice storefront restaurant and a then go watch a play.
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Old 11-10-2013, 12:22 PM
 
582 posts, read 780,004 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zach_33 View Post
.......

Plus, I am annoyed by the insinuation that people need to be fearful when visiting places like the St. Louis Arch or Forest Park. It's fine to exercise vigilance, but give me a break. The fear element that is pushed by certain factions in our society needs to be discouraged, not encouraged, in my opinion. Put away the gun. Undo the deadbolts on your door. Pop a valium. Take your wife or girlfriend out for a night on the town and enjoy a nice storefront restaurant and a then go watch a play.
I agree, forest park and the grounds of the arch are generally safe. If you follow some common sense in either area you will be fine. I would worry more about being ran over by a bike or skater in Forest Park than being mugged.
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Old 11-10-2013, 03:14 PM
 
Location: St. Louis
7,444 posts, read 7,028,973 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zach_33 View Post
I would discount what this cop has to say about crime, especially since he has only made one post on this message board, and he obviously hasn't spent much time in any other major city other than St. Louis.

Plus, I am annoyed by the insinuation that people need to be fearful when visiting places like the St. Louis Arch or Forest Park. It's fine to exercise vigilance, but give me a break. The fear element that is pushed by certain factions in our society needs to be discouraged, not encouraged, in my opinion. Put away the gun. Undo the deadbolts on your door. Pop a valium. Take your wife or girlfriend out for a night on the town and enjoy a nice storefront restaurant and a then go watch a play.
I agree with your point - I don't feel unsafe in the places you mentioned. I don't think the cop posting was pushing fear either - just calling it like he sees it.
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Old 11-10-2013, 03:16 PM
 
Location: St Louis, MO
4,677 posts, read 5,775,300 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MUTGR View Post
Yes, so we discount what a city cop has to say about crime in the city. I can't think of a better expert on crime in the city of St. Louis than a city cop.

He wasn't offering his opinion on crime in St.Louis versus Chicago or any other city. And his point is well taken - there is crime and it's not limited to North St. Louis.

Heck, we are seeing more in the county too.
Well, I have been a spatial analyst employed in crime analysis in over three dozen cities. But no one ever listens to me when I say St Louis is safe
Trying to predict crime associated with a particular location, especially a location defined purely by arbitrary boundaries, is difficult at best and deceptive most of the time.
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Old 11-10-2013, 04:13 PM
 
Location: Saint Louis, MO
3,483 posts, read 9,028,914 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marigolds6 View Post
Well, I have been a spatial analyst employed in crime analysis in over three dozen cities. But no one ever listens to me when I say St Louis is safe
Trying to predict crime associated with a particular location, especially a location defined purely by arbitrary boundaries, is difficult at best and deceptive most of the time.
If you've been a spatial analysts, and believe you have a valid argument as to why the city is safe, then i'd expect you to be able to prove it with analysis, documentation, or other information. Please do, as I'd like to see it!
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Old 11-10-2013, 04:20 PM
 
Location: Saint Louis, MO
3,483 posts, read 9,028,914 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zach_33 View Post
I would discount what this cop has to say about crime, especially since he has only made one post on this message board, and he obviously hasn't spent much time in any other major city other than St. Louis...
I must have missed where this poster specifically stated that he "hasn't spent much time in any other major city"...seems to be a stretch.

Based on this, I'd assume the only people who qualify as experts are those who define crime stats along the same lines as you (doesn't make much sense) and are world travelers (with quantifiable experience in a wide array of geographical locations, with varying densities, and crime statistics).

I'm not a world traveler, I've been all over this country and am a firm believer that every major metro I've visited has a location I'd rather not go to. When I was flying for the airlines, I've stayed at hotels near every major airport East of Denver, sometimes in rough neighborhoods...have gone jogging in locations that I later decided looked a bit sketchier than I originally observed. I've made it overseas twice (Paris and Germany) and have wandered around aimlessly for hours without feeling "threatened" but I know I've driven through parts of town that were rougher than others while overseas as well.

From my humble opinion, St. Louis has a crime problem...And with it's gentrification, the city is improving. I would never deny however, that certain parts of town are dangerous, while others are fairly safe. But you'll have a hard time convincing me that affluent west county suburbs are somehow as dangerous as low income st. louis city locations just because 1 out of the 10 people in the zipcode has been murdered...that's even more extreme than the arguments putting St. Louis at the top of the crime stats chart.
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Old 11-10-2013, 05:16 PM
 
Location: St. Louis
7,444 posts, read 7,028,973 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marigolds6 View Post
Well, I have been a spatial analyst employed in crime analysis in over three dozen cities. But no one ever listens to me when I say St Louis is safe
Trying to predict crime associated with a particular location, especially a location defined purely by arbitrary boundaries, is difficult at best and deceptive most of the time.
That's great. I still would rely on what a copy says personally.

Stats are funny things. Cities are getting very creative in how the record and report crimes.
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