Nevada Ranks Worst for Crime - 8 News NOW

Lindsay Patterson, Reporter

Nevada Ranks Worst for Crime

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Nevada, once again, is being designated as the most dangerous state in the nation. This is the third consecutive year that the Silver State has earned the designation.

The information is published in Crime State Rankings 2006, a annual publication by the Morgan Quitno Press. The designation is based on six crime factors.

In the past five years, violent crime has spiked 18-percent in Nevada even though nationally, violent crime is down. The report does state, "Nevada struggles with crime and other problems as it continues its rapid growth."

Tim Bedwell with the North Las Vegas Police Department says he takes Nevada's ranking with a grain of salt.

"One of the things that screws the numbers for Nevada is the fact that auto thefts are part of the part one crimes." According to the report, part one crimes include murder, rape, robbery aggravated assault, burglary and motor vehicle theft. Bedwell believes the high number of car thefts skew the overall ranking.

He says North Las Vegas police are constantly looking for new ways to reduce crime. "When you have police patrolling in police cars with a quick response to calls crime goes down." Bedwell says the More Cops Initiative will also help. He said, "It's going to reduce the fear of crime and it's going to reduce crime at the same time."

Here is a closer look at how the numbers break down in the overall ranking:
Murder - Nevada ranks 5th.
Rape - Nevada ranks 11th.
Robbery - Nevada ranks 2nd.
Aggravated Assault - Nevada ranks 11th
Motor Vehicle Theft - Nevada ranks 1st.

Police say this report does give them much additional information because they already monitor crime trends.

The safest state, according to the rankings, was South Dakota.

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