Slay blasts survey ranking St. Louis as 'most dangerous'
By Bill Raack, Matt Sepic, Tom Weber, KWMU
St. Louis, MO – St. Louis Mayor Francis Slay is lashing out after his city was named number one on a list of the most dangerous cities in the United States. The ranking, compiled by the private research firm Morgan Quitno Press, found that violent crime surged nearly 20% in St. Louis last year.
But Slay says even the FBI discounts the data that Morgan Quitno used, and he's calling the list "bogus."
"The city of St. Louis is not dangerous, much less the most dangerous city in America," Slay said in an interview Monday. "There are some high crime areas, neighborhoods in the city of St. Louis but the vast majority of our neighborhoods are safe."
According to the list, Detroit came in second this year behind St. Louis, followed by the town of Flint, Michigan.
Slay also says the survey is based on flawed data, noting estimates showing the city's population at 353,000, when the survey used a population figure of 330,000.
"These folks are not ex-police officers or ex-FBI officials or even criminologists, nor do they claim to be," Slay added. "They claim to be good at counting. They didn't even do that well because they misrepresented, underrepresented, the population of St. Louis which skewed the results somewhat."
Slay says that if you counted communities like Clayton, Webster Groves and others in the statistics, St. Louis would rank among the communities with the lowest crime rates. That's key, he adds, because many other cities' data are compiled using surrounding communities that might be in the same county.