Ardmore ranks highest in state for violent crime per capita

By  | 

ARDMORE, OK - From shocked. "i've never heard about anything happening here," said Ardmore resident Colby Welch.

To unphased. "Being halfway between Dallas and Oklahoma City there is a lot of drug traffic that comes through our town," said Kim Tucker, who also lives in Ardmore.

Those were some of the reactions of Ardmore residents who found out their city ranks number one in the state for violent crime per capita,
which includes murder, forcible rape, robbery, aggravated assault and non-negligent manslaughter.

The FBI report reflects numbers from 2011.

"While we were a little bit surprised our ranking was so high, we had anticipated an uptick in crime rate," said Sgt. Ryan Hunnicutt, with the Ardmore Police Department.

The FBI reported 405 violent crimes in the city of about 24,500 in 2011. That's a rate of about 16.5 crimes out of every 1000 people.
Two years later Sgt. Hunnicutt said there's an explanation for the high numbers.

"If you'll remember in 2011 we had an influx of gang violence that we've since responded to," he said.

Their response included changes within the department.

"We pulled some people out of desk jobs and put them on the street, increasing the number of officers on the street," said Hunnicutt. "We implemented an asset team, kind of a non-traditional team that wasn't burdened with taking report calls and was available to work on some of these problems."

Hunnicutt also said they've just finished submitting all their numbers for 2012 and hopes next year they'll drop out of that top spot.

"We feel like we're in a good position to work with the community to bring that rate down," Hunnicutt said. "It's something we're very concerned with, and we certainly have more work to do."

Also coming in the top five for violent crime per capita in Oklahoma was Durant ranked number 3 and Ada at number 4.

FBI report: