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Contact: Scott Morgan, 785-841-3534



New Mexico Ranks #1 in Crime

North Dakota Once Again is Safest

[2000 Rankings] [Methodology] [State Rankings for the 6 Crimes]

[Most Dangerous/Safest State Rankings 1994 to 2000]

[Corporate Information Sheet] [MQ Home Page]

LAWRENCE, KS — Not all is enchanting in the Land of Enchantment. New Mexico today was named the nation’s Most Dangerous State by Morgan Quitno Press, a Lawrence, Kansas-based independent research and publishing company, which released its annual findings. At the safer end of the rankings scale, North Dakota has a lock on the title of America’s Safest State, winning the honor for the fourth consecutive year.

"Without a doubt, New Mexico struggles with crime," said Scott Morgan, President of Morgan Quitno Press. "It has the nation’s highest violent crime rate, highest aggravated assault rate and highest burglary rate. In contrast, North Dakota has the lowest violent crime rate, lowest murder rate and the lowest aggravated assault rate."

The seventh annual Most Dangerous and Safest State rankings are based on six basic crime factors reported in Morgan Quitno’s annual reference book, Crime State Rankings 2000. The updated volume was published this week. Factors considered were rates per 100,000 population for murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault, burglary and motor vehicle theft. States are ranked based on how they compare to the national average for each crime category. The findings are based on 1998 crime statistics, the most recent final state data available from the FBI.

Joining New Mexico at the top of the rankings list (in descending order) were Florida, Nevada, Louisiana and Maryland. On the safer end of the rankings scale immediately preceding the North Dakota were New Hampshire, Maine, South Dakota and Vermont.

"For all but one of the seven years that we have issued the Most Dangerous State designation, New Mexico has ranked in the top ten," said Morgan. "It ranked fourth in last year’s Most Dangerous State list and shot to first place this year." Morgan added that while New Mexico clearly has some tough work ahead, its overall crime rate is down. "The state is making progress. From 1997 to 1998, New Mexico’s crime rate fell 2.7%."

The Most Dangerous/Safest State Award is one of four designations announced annually by Morgan Quitno Press in conjunction with publication of its annual statistical reference books. The company's other annual announcements designate the nation’s Safest City and Metro Area, the Most Livable State and the Healthiest State.

Additional information about 2000’s Most Dangerous and Safest States is available through the Morgan Quitno website at www.statestats.com. Included is a list of factors, an explanation of methodology, a table showing how each of the 50 states ranks for each of the six categories considered for the award, a historical view of how each state has ranked for each of the past seven years and company information. For further inquiries, please telephone Morgan Quitno Press at (785) 841-3534.


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