UPDATE: ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- People who live in what’s been named the fifth most dangerous neighborhood in the country are speaking out against the ranking.
89 out of every 1,000 people who live and work in the Jefferson and East State Street area have been victims of violent crime, according to NeighborhoodScout.com. Some in the area are saying they don’t agree with the ranking, but aren’t surprised by it.
The Circle K gas station at 7th and Jefferson has seen quite a bit of crime over the last few years. Just a few months ago, a gas pump was hit by bullets and a woman was shot in the parking lot.
The station’s manager, Don Diehl says because of that, he’s not surprised hearing this neighborhood was ranked as the 5th most dangerous in the country, but still says it shouldn’t be.
Since the beginning of the year, Diehl has been working with Rockford police to put an end to the panhandling, drug deals and shootings in the area.
"More and more I'm seeing police stop in, asking to view video tape, asking if i've noticed anything suspicious. There's more of a friendly co-existence between us now,” Diehl said.
Private security officers also patrol the gas station every night. We did speak with others who live and work in the area who say they feel the neighborhood is safe.
Rockford police weren’t happy with the ranking either. They say it’s not an accurate description of the area since the crime data used was from 2012.
ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- Rockford has made another negative list for dangerous neighborhoods, but Rockford Police say that we shouldn’t believe everything we hear.
NeighborhoodScout.com says according to FBI data from 2012, the area around 7th Street and East Jefferson is the fifth most dangerous neighborhood in the country. The website says 89 of every 1,000 people were victims crime. The neighborhood around North Rockton and west State was also on the list as the 18th most dangerous. Rockford Police says it’s more important we focus on what’s happening in those areas now, not what was going on there two years ago.
“In 2014 that’s where the biggest decrease in crime has been in the city so it kind of negates the really strong work of the neighborhood associations that are in there,” said Rockford Assistant Deputy Chief Pat Hoey.