HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – Holyoke Mayor Alex Morse is rejecting a statistical review that named Holyoke the most dangerous city in Massachusetts.
A frustrated Mayor Morse called the study “flawed.” Morse pointed out that the organization ignored Holyoke’s actual crime data.
The study was conducted by 24/7 Wall Street, an online financial news and opinion company. Using FBI violent crime data from 2017, they determined that violent crimes in Holyoke accounted for nearly two percent of all violent crime in Massachusetts two years ago.
But Mayor Morse said crime has gone down nearly 35 percent in Holyoke over the last 20 years. He said homicides and robberies are also at record lows.
Mayor Morse attributes the lower crime rate to the partnership between the community and the police department.
“I think we’ve increased trust between the residents and the police department,” said Mayor Morse. “People feel comfortable becoming partners with us to improve their neighborhoods.”
Morse said improvements in the public education system, housing, and public spaces have helped reduce crime. Mayor Morse added that Holyoke has invested millions to redevelop the city and make it a welcoming place for businesses and the arts.