ESPANOLA, N.M. (KRQE) – Numbers from the FBI say Espanola is the most dangerous in New Mexico. The numbers were compiled by a security company called Home Security Shield, and they show that people have a one in nine chance of being a victim of crime when in Espanola.
These facts are all per capita. Residents in Espanola have mixed opinions about the news, some were surprised while others say they’ve seen it first hand.
“That I’ve seen, yes…It’s awful,” says Espanola resident Geana Padilla.
“I’ve lived in Espanola my whole life and I’d have to disagree with that,” says Espanola resident John Law.
The figures show Espanola, with just over 10,300 residents, saw 26 violent crimes and 84 property crimes per 1,000 people in 2012. Police say in that same year, they saw 83 home burglaries in just one month.
They said burglaries are closely tied with violent crime so, to knock crime numbers down, police say they created a property crimes task force- tracking known offenders and learning their tactics. A year later, that same month- figures show only three burglaries.
Police said that definitely spells progress, but there’s still work to be done.
“We just continue to battle, continue to fight the fight and I think we’ve gained a lot more trust from the public,” says Espanola Police Corporal Detective Solomon Romero.
Police said people have been calling in crimes that were previously left unreported, another step in the right direction. Recently, they started another special task force aimed at cutting down on crime.
Albuquerque came in eighth on the list. After Espanola was Gallup. Artesia was ranked number three, Farmington came in at number four and Taos came in fifth.