A report released this week by security company Safe Streets USA has McMinnville ranked No. 13 in the state in terms of dangerous cities in which to live.
The company used data from the FBI in compiling the ranking, which combines both violent and property crimes. Statistics were used from 2012.
Crossville ranked as the No. 1 most dangerous city with a crime rate of 117 per 1,000 residents, according to the report. Crossville residents have a 1-in-9 chance of being a crime victim.
At No. 13, the report says McMinnville has a crime rate of 55 per 1,000 residents. That translates to a 1-in-18 chance of being a crime victim.
Manchester was ranked No. 7, while Nashville was one spot behind McMinnville at No. 14.
McMinnville Police Chief Bryan Denton says he doesn’t put much stock in the report.
“This report was generated by a security company that’s in the business of selling alarms,” said Denton. “What they’ve done is pull up some selective statistics which they think will help them sell alarms. Anyone who watches the news knows there are homicides in Nashville nearly every day. We’ve had one murder in the city limits since 2010 and that was in 2012. I’d have to question the sanity of anyone who thinks Nashville is a safer place to live than McMinnville.”
The report was compiled based on population on a per capita basis. While Nashville had 62 homicide cases and 311 forcible rapes in 2012, it also has 45 times the population of McMinnville.
In relation to cities of comparable size, McMinnville was a little higher based on 2012 stats.
For example, McMinnville had one murder, 14 forcible rapes, and eight robberies for a population of 13,746.
Soddy Daisy had no murders, three forcible rapes, and five robberies for a population of 12,989.
Elizabethton had no murders, two forcible rapes, and five robberies for a population of 14,240.
Dickson had one murder, seven forcible rapes, and one robbery for a population of 14,780.
Athens had no murders, nine forcible rapes, and 31 robberties for a population of 13,632. Athens was ranked No. 2 in the state.
Robbery is often confused with burglary or theft, but the terms are different. Robbery is to steal something by force, often by use of a gun or knife. Burglary is to steal something from a home or vehicle when the property owner is not there.
There were 644 property crimes reported in McMinnville. That’s compared to Soddy Daisy with 419, Elizabethton with 774, Dickson with 756, and Athens with 1,178.
In terms of aggravated assault, McMinnville had 88 reported. That’s compared to Soddy Daisy with 48, Elizabethton with 29, and Dickson with 50.
“I know we have some issues here,” said Denton. “There are issues everywhere. Our crime rate is a drop in the bucket compared to other places.”