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[Jackson] New Crime Ranking shows Metro Jackson Improving

Rural King

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The 14th annual City Crime Rankings: Crime in Metropolitan America" by CQ Press shows that the Jackson metro has improved from the 9th most dangerous metro in the United States to the 14th. The study tracks the per capita crime rates of 378 US metro areas for the crimes of: murder, rape, aggravated assault, auto theft, and robbery. You can read about the findings here is this Jackson Sun article.

Memphis is ranked 8th according the the Commercial Appeal.

Most cities dispute findings by CQ Press and other firms who publish such reports as flawed in their methodology due to differences in standards in reporting between the nation's various police departments.

Jackson's metro consists of Madison and Chester counties for purposes of this study, and did not incude Gibson County which is a component of the Jackson-Humboldt Combined Statistical Area. Gibson County should soon become part of the Jackson metro proper and that should cause Jackson's metro rankings to improve considerably.

Jackson's new mayor, Jerry Gist, has created a crime task force to deal with the issue of crime in the city and hopefully it's suggestions will prove successful guidelines in reducing crime and improving safety within the city proper. The CQ Press study already shows the city has a positive trend to build on by their standards, which can only be seen as a good development, whether or not one considers such a study's findings valid.

Jackson as a smaller city definitley has plenty of crime for its size, but for anyone who has lived in a bigger city it is relatively tame IMO.

Question: Does anyone find these studies a good measure of city's crime/safety? Does it shape your opinion of various cities/metros?

I personally find Jackson's rankings and those of other cities in such studies to be rather dubious. Crime is often concentrated heavily in certian areas - East Jackson in Jackson's case- and thus is not reflective of the overall city.

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In terms of overall feelings of safety that a person has when visiting or living in one of those cities, I would agree that the rankings might not be very useful since as you say crime tends to be concentrated.

There are areas in Memphis where you would be perfectly safe at most hours of the day.

The only city I've been where I've uniformly felt fear was in New Orleans. But crime there was off the charts, and still is. Example--NO pop. 250,000 has had 180 murders this year. Memphis--pop. 670,000, has had 150 and folks in Memphis are freaked out about it. NO's rate is about 3 times higher.

As to Jackson, being from Memphis I always had the vague and inaccurate feeling that Jackson was just another smallish town, so I was always puzzled why its crime rate should approach a city like Memphis.

I read that story on msnbc, and an FBI official said these rankings are pretty useless. He said that the comparisons aren't just apples to oranges, but like comparing watermelons to grapes.

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I agree with sleepy. I have to go out of my way to feel unsafe in Memphis, so it definitely is not indicative of how safe a city is. Now if the city weren't so spread out, and criminals lived near me, then I probably would think of the city as being unsafe.

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Memphis' crime is predictable. You can pretty much guarantee Memphis' crime is confined to North & South Memphis. Nowadays, North Memphis & South Memphis criminals are spreading over to East Memphis and going across to Mississippi.
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