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Most Dangerous Cities in New Mexico

New Mexico, a popular tourist destination in the US, attracted nearly 40 million domestic visitors in 2021, offering diverse attractions like White Sands national parks and historic towns like Santa Fe. (Photo: Deposit Photos)

Many people are unaware that some places in the state pose a different kind of danger. When one thinks of New Mexico, one typically thinks of the potential to see UFOs in Roswell and sweltering temperatures.

The study reveals New Mexico’s high violent and property crime rates, ranking second in the U.S., and suggests taking a look at some of the most dangerous cities in New Mexico before making any life-altering decisions. (Photo: iStock)

According to Travel Safe Abroad, some dangerous areas in New Mexico were labeled as the Most Dangerous Cities in New Mexico. The causes can range from concerns about undocumented immigration to the need for better employment opportunities with market-competitive wages to people simply being people. Whatever the justification, the data paints a distinct picture.

A study evaluating data from 22 cities in New Mexico found that the state ranks second most dangerous in the U.S., with high violent and property crime rates. The findings suggest considering these areas before making life-altering decisions, as they may not be surprising to residents. Let’s take a tour of some of the most dangerous cities in New Mexico.


1. Gallup

Gallup has a high violent crime rate, 450% higher than the national average, with high statistics for at least a decade. (Photo: iStock)

The town of Gallup, which has a population of 22,000, has consistently been one of the most dangerous cities in New Mexico. This western town is a hub for outdoor beauty and adventure and is situated on both sides of the well-known Route 66. It is also renowned for its indigenous culture, which includes the local Navajo, Hopi, and Zuni tribes. Unfortunately, this small city in New Mexico’s northwest now holds the unfortunate distinction of being one of the worst places to live in the state.

According to the data examined, Gallup is among the top U.S. cities for crime rates among major metropolitan areas. Gallup reports 437 violent crimes per 100,000 people, mostly aggravated assault. 6 338 reported property crimes out of 987 total were reported. Gallup locals have a 1 in 58 chance of experiencing violent crime. This is about twice the national average and four times the average for the state. Property is in jeopardy once out of 23 – 1.5 times that of New Mexico. Safety in Gallup involves being aware and exercising common sense day and night. No wonder Gallup hits the top of the list of the most dangerous cities in New Mexico.

2. Belen

Belen, with a crime rate of 69 per 1,000 residents, ranks among the highest in America compared to all communities of all sizes. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

Belen is a tiny New Mexico town with a population of about 7,094 people, located just south of Albuquerque. Unfortunately, the rate of crime in this area is about 190% higher than the national average. According to FBI statistics, there are 5,243 property crimes and 2,029 violent crimes per 100,000 people. Belen consistently ranks as the second among the most dangerous cities in New Mexico thanks to these startling statistics.

In actuality, there is a 1 in 52 chance that a Belenite will experience a homicide, rape, or assault. And a 20 percent chance of being the victim of a property crime. The historic Rio Grande Valley town of Belen, whose name is Spanish for Bethlehem, is located along the state’s southern border but is unsafe for solo travelers without taking serious precautions.

3. Deming


Deming, NM’s 2020 crime rate is 365, 1.4 times higher than the U.S. average, with a 34% decrease from 2019. However, violent crime has increased over the past five years. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

West of Las Cruces, close to the border with Mexico, Deming served as a railroad and transportation hub for the Santa Fe and Southern Pacific lines in 1881. The locals wished for a thriving metropolis. This aspiration gave rise to the original moniker, “New Chicago.” Unfortunately, despite having a small population of about 14,000 people, criminal activity rivals that of its namesake. Deming, which has consistently ranked among the top five most dangerous cities in New Mexico, is one of those places.

Data on violent crime shows 963 per 100,000 people, and 1 in 108 incidents will probably affect locals. Additionally, with over 5,153 property crimes per 100,000 people, the crime ratio is 1 in 19, ranking it as the fourth-highest in the state for both violent and property crimes. Although there is little traffic and it takes less than 15 minutes to walk across town to get to work, there are risks associated with living in this New Mexico town. These are the reasons why Deming is present on the list of the most dangerous cities in New Mexico.

READ ALSO: Most Dangerous Cities In Arkansas 2023

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