SJ Falls from Safest City Status

Now San Jose is No. 4

The city of San Jose has slipped from its No. 3 spot on the  "Safest Big City in America" list and is now ranked No. 4.

San Jose was ranked safest city among cities with a population of  more than 500,000 for six years before slipping to third on the list  published last year. Honolulu and El Paso, Texas were ranked above San Jose  last year.

The safest cities have been ranked for 15 years on a list released  by CQ Press. The 2008-2009 list based on 2007 crime statistics shows Honolulu  again in the top spot, with New York ranked second and El Paso third.

San Diego and Los Angeles, ranked sixth and eighth, respectively,  are the only other California cities in the top 10 among safest big cities.

Michelle McGurk, spokeswoman for San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed, said  the CQ Press rankings are based on FBI statistics, but she did not know  exactly how the rankings are compiled.

"Part of the challenge with the CQ rankings is that they don't  reveal their methodology," McGurk said. "There has been some controversy as  far as how this organization makes their determination."

However, McGurk said placing in the top five safest big cities is  an honor.

"Here in San Jose, we enjoy the fact we are among the five safest  big cities in the country," McGurk said. "The most important thing is not  where you place on the list, but whether or not the city is actually safe.  And by any measure, San Jose is a safe place to live and work."

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