A shooting last night on Washington Street has sparked a debate in the comments section of an article in the Peabody Patch this morning, causing people to momentarily lose their minds and start comparing Peabody to Lynn and Chelsea when it comes to violent crime.
But please, can we take a deep breath right now and realize that actual crime statistics show that Peabody remains one of the safest cities in the state? Oh sure, things aren’t perfect here in our little berg. There is a drug problem for sure, and some infamous recent examples of how we definitely are not Mayberry, NC.
As just one citizen, I would like to see Mayor Ted Bettencourt address the issue of drugs and crime when he makes his state of the city mid-term address on Monday night at Wiggin Auditorium. But crime, which is on the rise everywhere, isn’t rampant Peabody right now.
Don’t take that as my opinion. Look at the facts, actual crime statistics from the Federal Bureau of Investigation. FBI crime statistics show that Peabody has a fairly low crime rate for a city of its size. In 2011, there were 2.4 violent crimes per 1,000 citizens.
In Beverly the number was 2.31, while it’s 2.25 per 1,000 in Danvers, and Salem was at 2.86.
Comparing Peabody to places such as Lynn and Chelsea when it comes to violent crime, as was done this morning in the Patch, is ridiculous and outrageous. In Lynn, according to the FBI data, there were 8.85 violent crimes per citizen in 2011 (more than three times Peabody’s crime rate), while in Chelsea it was a whopping 17.43.
By most indicators (actual statistics), Peabody is a fairly safe place to live when it comes to crime. Is it perfect? Of course not, and it would definitely be good to see the mayor come up with a vision for cleaning up our drug problem, which definitely exists.
But come on, people! When you look at the real facts, we should be secure to know that we live in a fairly safe community.