Here is an excerpt from this article on KVIA.com:
"For the first time, El Paso has been named the city with the lowest crime rate in the United States with a population of over 500,000 residents. Officials said El Paso Police Chief Greg Allen was proud to announce the ranking, which has just been released by CQ Press in its latest city crime rankings... Since 1997, El Paso has been ranked in the second or third spot of safest cities by this independent study... CQ Press is an independent research firm that conducts various safety studies of cities, metropolitan areas and states." Link to Full Article
Analysis: I wrote a blog post last year after El Paso came in at no. 2 on the list, and I can't say this post will be all that different. However, I did find some things curious in the CQ Press list of both top ten safest AND most dangerous cities:
Lowest Crime Rate Ranking / Highest Crime Rate Ranking 1. El Paso, TX / 1. Detroit, MI 2. Honolulu, HI / 2. Baltimore, MD 3. New York, NY / 3. Memphis, TN 4. San Jose, CA / 4. Washington, DC 5. San Diego, CA / 5. Atlanta, GA 6. Austin, TX / 6. Indianapolis, IN 7. Portland, OR / 7. Philadelphia, PA 8. Los Angeles, CA / 8. Milwaukee, WI 9. Seattle, WA / 9. Houston, TX 10. Fort Worth, TX / 10. Columbus, OH
I haven't checked out the website to see the exact methodology they use for coming up with these rankings, so I'm sure I'm missing something important. I understand plenty of these rankings, like San Jose and Indianapolis. But New York and Los Angeles? Really? They must be using the crime stats in a per 100,000 residents fashion; otherwise, they forgot about Compton. On the flip side, I understand Washington, DC and Baltimore. But why isn't Camden, NJ on the list? I hope it's because it has a population of less than 500,000 (I have no idea if that's the case). And Columbus, Ohio is more dangerous than places in New Jersey?
Anyway, back to El Paso. It's the great dichotomy of the border that the safest city in America is literally a stone's throw away from the most deadly city in Mexico. The reason why the murder rate and otherwise violent crime rate is so low is mostly because El Paso has a really great police force. They know their city, and have a great relationship with citizens - who obviously trust them - and sources who provide them with information useful for fighting crime.
However, a low crime rate doesn't mean that nefarious things aren't going on in El Paso. The Ciudad Juárez/El Paso drug trafficking corridor is the most lucrative along the 2,000 mile-long border. That means that a LOT of illegal drugs are passing from Mexico into the US in and around the El Paso area. That also implies that there are many stash houses in El Paso where these drugs are temporarily stored for cutting, repackaging, local distribution, or shipment to other U.S. markets. That kind of activity doesn't require violence to function. Remember, getting the drugs across the border is the hard part; once they're here, things are easy in comparison. Drug traffickers who work in El Paso have no desire to draw attention to their activities because they know the El Paso PD and Sheriff are good at what they do. So, that means they have to work extra hard to conceal their activities - which involves abstinence from violence.
I do applaud the City of El Paso for their selection, and like I said earlier, the cops in El Paso are some of the best in the business. I just want readers to realize that - again, not to take away from the city - low crime rates don't always mean that bad things aren't happening.