Midland, Odessa ranked among most dangerous cities by Texas Mont - KWES NewsWest 9 / Midland, Odessa, Big Spring, TX: newswest9.com |

Midland, Odessa ranked among most dangerous cities by Texas Monthly

Midland police vehicle (Source: KWES) Midland police vehicle (Source: KWES)
MIDLAND-ODESSA, TX (KWES) -

Texas Monthly released a report last week, stating that both Midland and Odessa crime rates puts them among the worst in the state, but both police departments are saying otherwise.

"The vast majority of those are either drug related or domestic related," said Cpl. Steve LeSueur with the Odessa Police Department. "It's not like random people are just being targeted over here in Odessa."

The report states Odessa has about 1,070 violent crimes per 100,000 people as Texas Monthly ranked them the most dangerous city to live in in the state. Lubbock comes in just behind Odessa with just around 825 crimes per 100,000.

Both the Midland and Odessa police departments claim reports like these pick and choose what to compare, typically a few categories from what they call level one crimes. This includes rape, aggravated assault, robbery and murder, which are actually on the decline in both cities.

"In 2015, we had 12 murders here," said LeSueur. "Last year, we had five. So far this year, we've had exactly three, including the one from yesterday (Sunday)."

"If you look at our stats from 2017, the only numbers that are up are rape, but all the other numbers are drastically down," said Sgt. Jimmy Young with MPD.

The Midland Police Department appears to be in the same situation. 

Their numbers show rape was reported 24 times in the city last year, this year at about the halfway mark, there were 17, on pace for 34. 

Both Midland and Odessa are in the same boat, and though there is no clear cut reason, there are some theories.

"We want the suspect arrested on these things," said Young. "Because no one deserves to be invaded, a person owns their own body. We don't want no one to be hurt. Back in the day, I don't know anyone would say anything. But now, there are places people can go get help."

OPD said a reason crime rates rise here, in particular, is the oil industry due to rapid growth of population.

But it's something they work on day in and day out and are focused on the now, which is improving. 

"We had those numbers for 2013," said LeSueur. "But what's important is what's happening now."

Both departments say you can request the numbers by reaching out to them. 

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