McALLEN, RGV – If one measures the security of a community by the numbers of murders and robberies, the Texas-Mexico border region continues to be safe.
Congressman Henry Cuellar on Thursday released a compilation of the latest crime statistics from the Federal Bureau of Investigation. He said the statistics undercut the perception many have that the border region is very unsafe.
The 2014 ‘Crime in the United States’ survey shows a lower murder rate in cities along the Texas-Mexico border than in other major cities across the state of Texas and the nation and the State of Texas.
Cuellar said the statistics also show that the number of robberies, assaults, and rapes are significantly lower in border cities than the major metropolitan cities in Texas.
The Laredo Democrat highlighted these findings in particular:
· The murder rates in Washington, DC, Dallas, and Houston are more than twice the murder rates in McAllen, Brownsville and El Paso, respectively
· In 2014, there were 242 murders in Houston and 116 in Dallas, compared to 14 murders in Laredo, six in McAllen and five in Brownsville
· In 2014, there were 10,186 robberies in Houston and 4,202 robberies in Dallas, compared to 415 in El Paso, 196 in Laredo, 138 in Brownsville and 68 in McAllen
“Many people, both in the political arena and out, mischaracterize the southern border region as very unsafe. But today’s numbers, for yet another year, paint a very different picture. These statistics clearly show that some of the safest cities in the United States are on the U.S.-Mexico border. The murder rate is actually higher in Washington, D.C. where I work than in McAllen, El Paso or Brownsville, all along the Texas border with Mexico,” Cuellar said, in a prepared statement.
“These numbers should cause people to rethink some of the things they may have heard about the region. Misinformation like that hurts our local economy and makes it difficult to attract skilled workers and encourage investment.”
Click here for a bar chart showing the number of robberies in major Texas cities.
Click here for a bar chart showing the number of aggravated assaults in major Texas cities.
Click here for a bar chart showing the number of rapes in major Texas cities.
Click here for a bar chart showing the number of murders in major Texas and U.S. cities.
Click here for a bar chart showing the number of murders in major Texas cities
The FBI issued a warning about making simplistic assumptions based upon its 2014 crime statistics.
“Each year when Crime in the United States is published, some entities use the figures to compile rankings of cities and counties. These rough rankings provide no insight into the numerous variables that mold crime in a particular town, city, county, state, tribal area, or region. Consequently, they lead to simplistic and/or incomplete analyses that often create misleading perceptions adversely affecting communities and their residents. Valid assessments are possible only with careful study and analysis of the range of unique conditions affecting each local law enforcement jurisdiction. The data user is, therefore, cautioned against comparing statistical data of individual reporting units from cities, metropolitan areas, states, or colleges or universities solely on the basis of their population coverage or student enrollment,” the FBI said.
Click here to read the FBI’s Crime in the United States 2014 report in full.