Using exclusive, apparently rigorous data from the real estate Web site Neighborhoodscout.com, the personal finance Web site walletpop.com has come up with a list of the 25 most dangerous neighborhoods in America.
We were oddly dismayed to see that none from Houston made the cut, while two from Dallas did. (The environs of the Cotton Bowl and an adjacent area were both "enshrined".) Anything they can do we can do better, and that includes crime.
But you can also search neighborhoodscout.com's database by city, which is what we did. Most people look for the safest areas with this function, but creeps like us use "advanced search" to reverse the order of safety from highest to lowest.
Here are five mini-Meccas of H-Town mayhem...
1. Houston's worst statistical neighborhood was something of a surprise: Top dishonors went to Airline Drive and North Main from the Loop up to E. 40th Street. I say "something of a surprise" as I know first-hand how bad that neighborhood can be. On David Beebe's and my Sole of Houston slog through there last December, things were decidedly dicey. A teen-aged prostitute begged to used my cellphone one minute, and the next, a man too drunk to speak in complete sentences attempted to sell us crack, and then wanted to fight us when we refused to buy it. He only staggered off when a cop passed by on Airline.
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2. Four of the next five neighborhoods are in deep Third Ward. I was a little surprised to see the Trey decidedly outpoint the Nickel here. The Fifth only had one sub-neighborhood in the top ten, while areas to the north of 610 like Trinity Gardens came in with two.
3. Northern Gulfton -- the apartment barrio centered on Glenmont and Chimney Rock -- was the only Southwest Houston neighborhood to crack the top ten.
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4. According to these statistics, downtown is the 13th most dangerous neighborhood in Houston.
5. Hedwig Village cracked the top 30, which was a total shocker. Is it really more dangerous around Memorial High School than it is in Fondren Southwest? Is "TP-ing" houses one of the crimes counted in the database?