The 11 Most Dangerous Cities in Oklahoma
As the federal crime stats from 2014 finally hit the web, many wonder if Lawton fell off or moved up the list of Oklahoma's most dangerous cities.
As a note, this ranking is not a critique of police practices or effectiveness. It is simply a rough analysis of where crimes occurred. If you want to hop in and see everything yourself, here are the FBI stats.
Believe it or not, Midwest City is quite a large town, thanks in part to Tinker AFB and the tens of thousands that work there. I've personally lived there for a few years. While most people consider Midwest City (and it's twin neighbor Del City) to be the roughest area of the OKC metro, it's not all that bad. Sure, you'll hear gun shots a few times a week, but you get used to it. Even though there are some very pretty places in Midwest City, the stats don't lie. Property crime is very high, as well as a laundry list of violent offenses.
While Durant is currently floating through some unique circumstances, such as a petition to change the incorporated name in honor of Kevin Durant's backstabbing, and the amount of crime is relatively low, it's the sway of population and the ratio of said crimes that lend to its top ten finish. You're odds of property crime and violent offenses are somewhat level in this border town.
Another small, somewhat rural town on this list, Wagoner falls into the same situation as Durant did. While crimes are low, it's the census that aids the odds. Founded long ago when railroads were still the pinnacle of technology, there's not much to see or do in Wagoner. Though, the more adventurous traveler might see things different. BRACC closed the historic armory there, but it has since become the public property of Wagoner. No news yet of what they plan for such a structure.
With an astounding 3,217 violent offenses plus property crimes North of 20,000, there's no doubt Tulsa finds a place on the list. Even with those incredibly high numbers, it's an improvement. Last year it came in at number three. While it's the second largest city in the state, the population tops out around 400k. The suburbs are where most of T-Towns inhabitants live, though the numbers suggest they also commute to Tulsa-Proper to commit crime.
Tulsa isn't the only city on the list making improvements, OKC did too. Last year, 'The City' clocked in as the fourth most dangerous place in the Sooner State. This year, things are looking up. With so many city-wide public projects, it's projected to get even better in time. Still, when your visiting OKC, lock your doors & carry a whistle.
We've already talked about Del City. How it's somehow considered a conjoined twin to Midwest City, yet distinguished differently here is anybodies guess. It is a somewhat dangerous town, but like most, the local city gov is trying to curb all of that.
Tucked away in Northern Oklahoma is my hometown of Ponca City. A sleepy little town that used to be extremely safe and very clean. When the Conoco/Phillips 66 shenanigans finally seemed to wrap up, Ponca City saw a big loss of population. With that, and a helping hand from widespread meth use, crime has entangled itself into a once great community. Violent crime is relatively low, but the property crime that seems to follow tweakers is high.
If you've never been to Shawnee, you're not alone. It's the town most people can give you directions to, but have never visited themselves. It's one of the oldest towns in the state, founded just after the Civil War by a number of native tribes. Rich in history, culture, and art, it's not a bad place to visit... but you might lock up the valuables and carry a big stick as it's pretty rich in property and violent crime too.
Climbing up one spot from last year, Muskogee had less property crime last year, but the violent offenders must have missed that memo. While most people know of this place courtesy of Merle Haggard, there is a shockingly long list of notable people that called this square town home.
Lawton ranked in on the safer side (#6) of the most dangerous towns last year. 2014 saw 893 violent crimes, 75 rapes and 4,508 property crimes. With a population just shy of 100k, you're odds of being victimized are less than one percent... While property crimes such as burglary and theft are somewhat common, it's easy to troll pawn shops to find your stuff. As terrible as that is, be glad we didn't earn that number one spot.
It's not the first time we've seen Ardmore at the top of this list. Much like most cities on this list, it's long had a reputation as a tough town. With around 25k people, almost two percent of the population will be on the receiving end of a violent crime. A staggering thirteen percent of citizens will suffer a property crime. Those numbers don't lie.