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New Mexico is considered one of the most dangerous states in the US, with only Alaska having a higher violent crime rate per 100,000 people in 2019. The national violent crime rate was 856.6 per 100,000 people. Not only did this rank New Mexico as the second most dangerous state, but it was also the biggest increase in crime rates, up 10% from 2018. The Land of Enchantment is home to over 2.1 million people, making become the 16th smallest state. , by population.
Despite high crime rates, New Mexico has safe cities and is home to attractions such as the Carlsbad Caverns, White Sands National Monument and the incredible Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta. Combine snowy mountains with incredible deserts. It was also the first state to grow wine grapes.
Below are 10 of New Mexico's largest and safest cities so you can find a desirable place to visit or a safe place to stay. We include numbers from the latest FBI city statistics for 2019.
The 10 Safest Cities in New Mexico: A Quick Look
|Violent crime rate per 100,000:||138|
Corrales is a relatively small town with a population of 8,715. In 2019, it had a violent crime rate of just 138 per 100,000 residents and the lowest property crime rate of any mid-sized to large city in New Mexico. The property crime rate was 711 per 100,000. More than 80% of violent crimes involved serious assaults and no homicides were recorded in the year.
Corrales has had a steady population increase since 1980, when it had a population of just 2,791. By 1990 it had risen to 5,453 and continued to rise to 7,334 in 2000 and 8,329 in 2010. The town is known for its high density of trees and the area is popular for fishing and bird watching. In 2007, CNN ranked it in the top 20 best places to live when it had an average value of $450,000 at the time. It even has a local brewery.
|Violent crime rate per 100,000:||190|
Although Rio Rancho is the third largest city in New Mexico, it is one of the safest. Its population of about 100,000 suffered three homicides in 2019, but it has a low violent crime rate of 190 per 100,000 and its property crime rate of 1,474 per 100,000 is the fourth best of New Mexico's largest cities. Of the 189 violent crimes reported in 2019, 134 or 71% were serious assaults.
The original settlement was founded by Spanish settlers in 1710 and was acquired by the United States in 1848. As its name suggests, it was a popular ranching region, but its proximity to Albuquerque meant considerable urban development in the 20th century. Although ranching is still practiced today, the city's largest employer is the Intel Corporation, which owns a $2 billion semiconductor factory in the city. Several new developments have been agreed upon and the city's population continues to grow.
|Violent crime rate per 100,000:||342|
Alamogordo is a medium-sized city in New Mexico with a population of over 31,000. It has a violent crime rate of 342 per 100,000 and the eighth best property crime rate of 2,501 per 100,000. In 2019, no homicides were recorded and 91% of violent crimes were reported as aggravated assault.
Although the current city was founded in 1898, people have lived in the area for 11,000 years. After the town was incorporated in 1912, it became a popular tourist spot, and attractions such as White Sands National Monument remain popular with visitors and tourists alike. In addition to a network of municipal parks, the city has a zoo and an important network of hiking trails. The city's largest employer is Holloman Air Force Base, which also accounts for 50% or more of the local economy.
|Violent crime rate per 100,000:||345|
The town of Anthony is one of the smallest on our list, with a population of just over 9,000. It has a violent crime rate of 345 per 100,000 people and had no homicides in 2019. More than 90% of incidents were reported as serious bodily harm. Anthony also has the second best property crime rate, with just 722 reported incidents per 100,000 residents.
The small town sits on the border between Texas and New Mexico. It is 21 miles north of El Paso. With less than 8,000 residents at the 2000 census, it's a fast-growing city that wasn't really incorporated until 2010.
|Violent crime rate per 100,000:||359|
Sunland Park has a population of over 18,000 residents and a violent crime rate of 359 per 100,000 residents and a property crime rate of 1,044 per 100,000. Its property crime rate is the third best among major cities in New Mexico. In 2019, no homicides were recorded and 84% of violent crimes committed involved grievous bodily harm.
Sunland Park is on the border between Texas and Chihuahua, Mexico. Founded in 1983, it has a 30-acre amusement park called Western Playland, as well as a racetrack and casino. You can also get a feel for the "Greetings from El Paso" sign located at the Retail Village Substation by looking at the shops and restaurants.
|Violent crime rate per 100,000:||471|
Portales has a population of 11,675 and a violent crime rate of 471 per 100,000. The property crime rate of 2,612 per 100,000 is also among the lowest in the state. Despite being among the safest cities in New Mexico due to its violent crime rate, one homicide was reported in 2019. 84% of violent crimes committed were serious assaults.
The town was founded in 1909, named after a local watering hole that rose from a rocky outcrop. Founded in 1934, Eastern New Mexico University has grown to become the third largest university in the state. Known as the largest producer of Valencian peanuts in the United States, Portales' economy is heavily dependent on the cultivation and export of peanuts and the manufacture of peanut butter.
|Violent crime rate per 100,000:||497|
With a population of over 100,000, Las Cruces is the second largest city in New Mexico, although it is still considerably smaller than the largest city and capital, Albuquerque, which has five times the population. Despite its size, Las Cruces is a safe place to visit or live, with a violent crime rate of 497 per 100,000, although the property crime rate of 3,581 per 100,000 is not as promising. In 2019, 10 homicides were recorded and 75% of violent crimes were serious assaults.
Surrounded by mountains with the Organ Mountains to the east, the city of Las Cruces is 40 miles from El Paso and Sunland Park. The city is home to Virgin Galactic's headquarters and, 55 miles to the north, Spaceport America. White Sands Test Facility and White Sands Missile Range are the main employers in the area. Visitors can enjoy annual wine festivals, a pumpkin festival, a Day of the Dead and a Cinco de Mayo celebration. The main campus of New Mexico State University is also located in Las Cruces.
|Violent crime rate per 100,000:||526|
Artesia has a population of 12,366 and a violent crime and property crime rate of 526 and 3,041 per 100,000 people respectively in 2019. There were no homicides last year, more than three-quarters of violent crimes recorded were bodily harm serious.
Artesia was named in 1903 and incorporated in 1905. An artesian aquifer was found in the area, which led to its early growth, but it dried up and was used for agriculture in the 1920s. The town is home to Abo Primary School, the only school totally underground public. David BowieThe Man Who Fell to Earthit was filmed at the Artesia Restaurant and Hotel.
|Violent crime rate per 100,000:||674|
Clovis is a medium-sized city. The 38,734 residents reported a violent crime rate of 674 incidents per 100,000 residents and a property crime rate of 3,805 per 100,000 in 2019. The violent crime rate includes two reported homicides in the 12 months and 68% of crimes were serious assaults . However, the city has a high rape rate, with a rate of 139 per 100,000.
The town of Clovis began in 1906 and was incorporated in 1909. Although the town has a somewhat troubled past, with a mass shooting that killed two people and injured four in 2017 and a mass breakout of Clovis prison in 2008, it is considered a safe city. Animal husbandry, peanut cultivation and cotton cultivation are popular in the area. In the 1960s, musicians such as Buddy Holly and Roy Orbison recorded songs at the Norman Petty Recording Studio.
|Violent crime rate per 100,000:||821|
Bernalillo is a relatively small town with a population of just over 10,000. It has a violent crime rate of 821 per 100,000 and acrime against propertyRate of 2,241 per 100,000 inhabitants. In 2019 there was one homicide and 87% of the city's violent crimes were serious assaults.
Bernalillo is deeply involved in the New Mexico wine scene. The grape was first introduced in the 1620s, and although poor weather conditions dampened its popularity, it has returned with a vengeance. The New Mexico Wine Festival is held annually on Labor Day and many local residents are involved in growing and growing grapes and the wine industry in general.
Here's How to Stay Safe in New Mexico
Although some parts of New Mexico are considered unsafe, most incidents of violence and crime can be avoided by being vigilant and investigating. When visiting the state, follow these basic tips to reduce your chances of becoming a victim of crime.
- Keep your valuables out of sight- Although New Mexico is full of photo opportunities, avoid walking around with cameras and cell phones. Try to keep them in a secure purse or purse, and leave other valuables in your hotel room or elsewhere.
- search your location– Do your research before your trip, wherever you are staying. Find safe places to eat and drink and places to visit. Investigate the emergency services and try to get information from residents and other visitors to the area.
- Avoid crime spots– During the investigation, find the areas considered most dangerous and avoid them, especially if you are traveling alone. Also avoid dark alleys and parks or secluded places late at night.
Related reading:The 25 Safest Cities in Mexico (with photos)
New Mexico has one of the highest violent crime rates in the United States.any US state, and saw a significant increase in 2019. However, that doesn't mean you can't enjoy a safe visit. Above, we've listed ten of the safest cities with a population of around 8,000 or more, along with tips to help you stay safe in the Land of Enchantment.
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Selected photo credit: NorthAmericanStories, Pixabay
- 1 The 10 Safest Cities in New Mexico: A Quick Look
- 1.1 1. Corals
- 1.2 2. Flussranch
- 1.3 3. Alamogordo
- 1.4 4. Antonio
- 1.5 5. Sunland-Park
- 1.6 6. Portal
- 1.7 7. The crosses
- 1.8 8. Artesian
- 1.9 9. Clovis
- 1.10 10. Bernalillo
- 2 How to stay safe in New Mexico
- 3 Conclusion