A recent list of the 100 most dangerous cities in the U.S. has five Texas towns listed: Beaumont, Lubbock, Houston, Balch Springs and Odessa. Of the five named cities, Odessa is ranked as the most dangerous and comes in at No. 66 on the list. Beaumont is the safest of the five at No. 92.
The list is an annual project conducted by Neighborhood Scout. Researchers look at all cities with more than 25,000 residents and review their crime rate in relation to their population. For the most part, the list focuses on the number of violent crimes, like murder, armed robbery and aggravated assault, that occur relative to the number of residents.
You can see the full list of cities here.
While these rankings may be a bit alarming for residents in these cities, it is important to note that the FBI says these results are a little misleading. They say there are several factors relating to crime that researchers don't take into account for in this list. While interesting, the list really gives no insight into what could actually cause these crimes to occur.
It's also easy to think of these towns as crime-filled, which may not necessarily be the case. Beaumont, for example, had 16 murders, which is rather minor when you compare that number to the national total of 15,696. Houston, on the other hand, had 305 murders and over 20,000 robberies and assaults.
According to the list, East St. Louis, Ill., is the most dangerous city in the nation with 1694 violent crimes to its 26,790 residents.
On a positive note, the same research team has created a safest city list, which includes seven Texas towns. Colleyville ranks at number 11 and Cibolo is the lowest at 85. Other cities on this list include Friendswood, Wylie, Keller, Flower Mound and Little Elm.