'Oldest Town in Texas' makes top 100 most dangerous cities

NACOGDOCHES (KYTX) - The "Oldest Town in Texas" is one of the most dangerous in the United States. According to a study called Neighborhood Scout, Nacogdoches is number 99 on the list, but the city's police department says there's no way. CBS 19's Amanda Roberson looked in to the report and talked to both sides about the study.

"I moved back from the bigger city to raise my kids thinking 'going back home, you don't have to worry about all this crazy stuff' and then this," Mother of five Bernadette Benson grew up in Nacogdoches and said she can't believe her hometown is so dangerous."It's family oriented and there's not a whole lot to do here but then again you don't have a whole lot of the crazy stuff that you have in big towns, or so I thought."

"We understand that this is a list that no one wants to be on," said Dr. Andrew Schiller, founder and CEO of the survey's parent company Location, Inc.

Dr. Schiller explained the study uses the Universal Crime Report from 2010 and divided it among the city's 2010 census population. "We have 329 violent crimes reported by the Nacogdoches, Texas city agency and one violent crime reported by the Stephen F. Austin State University police."

Those violent crimes are homicide, forcible rape, armed robbery and aggravated assault.

"They have a very, extraordinarily high rate of aggravated assault in the city of Nacogdoches," Dr. Schiller added.

274 reports of aggravated assaults in 2010 according to the FBI's final report, but Nacogdoches Police Sergeant Greg Sowell said those numbers simply aren't true. "Best we can determine right now is we had 36 compared to 274 and 274 would certainly send the crime rates skyrocketing."

At the end of the year, city police departments across the state send their crime reports to the Texas Department of Public Safety in Austin, then to the FBI in Washington, D.C. for final confirmation. Sowell said he thinks the numbers got lost in translation. "We don't know if this is a reporting issue on our end or a reporting or interpretation issue in Austin or what, but we're working to get it corrected and we plan on doing that and getting it corrected immediately."

"If they have made an error in reporting to the FBI for the 2010 data and they would like to make that change, as soon as that is updated on the FBI's web site we would be glad to incorporate it," Dr. Schiller added. 

That's good news for Benson, but this danger scare has her thinking twice about safety. "I guess we take those things for granted and I might think twice about leaving and going to Walmart at 10pm."

Sgt. Sowell also noted the city's crime number have actually gone down the past three years.

To the Neighborhood Scouts study, click here, and latest crime numbers from the FBI, click here.


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