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Candidates skew crime figures to fit argument

 KyleEzell
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The Columbus Dispatch wroteMayoral candidates skew crime figures to fit argument

Sunday, October 14, 2007

By Robert Vitale

Crime statistics can make Columbus look like an American Baghdad. They also can make it look like Bexley with three-quarters of a million people.

Mayoral candidates Michael B. Coleman and Bill Todd are using real numbers — well, most of the time, anyway — when they spout crime statistics as part of their law-and-order pitch to voters in the Nov. 6 elections.

But the numbers Todd chooses describe a city that’s teetering on chaos, while Coleman’s say we’re fairly safe and sound.

“The bottom line is, they’re cherry-picking,” said Ohio State University sociology professor David Jacobs, whose research into crime trends leads him to believe that the demographics of a city’s population have more sway over crime numbers than a mayor does.

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Nice balanced article in Dispatch today on this crime issue. Interesting that Delaware, Ohio has a higher per capita rate of rape than Columbus!

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