Carbondale one of the most deadly cities in Illinois

From outside looking in, it may seem like any other town in our area, but a recent study which used FBI crime data ranks Carbondale, Illinois as the 4th most dangerous city in the state and the 66th most dangerous city nationally.

With a population of a little more than 26,000, the city had two murders, 35 rapes, 48 robberies, and more than 200 assaults in the last year.

As the saying goes, numbers never lie, but Carbondale city leaders aren’t sure that’s the case.

“I have trouble believing it to start with. Sure there are incidents that go on in Carbondale, but there are incidents that go on everywhere,” said Mayor Donald Monty.

“Carbondale does have some crime issues, we won’t deny that,” said City Manger Kevin Beatty.

In August, City Manager Kevin Beatty dismissed former police chief Jody O’Guinn in an attempt to get the city’s police department headed in a different direction. Four months later, they are still searching for a long term replacement.

“They’re going to have to have a good working knowledge of what life is like in a university town. Bringing in somebody into a community that’s not a university town, that’s a town of 5 or 10,000, they may have some job skills that would be good, but there is a different mindset when you’re working in a community that does contain a university,” said Beatty.

Mayor Donald Monty says that crime in his city is no different than in any other college town, but says in this case a few bad apples are spoiling the bunch.

“When you look at the patterns of what we see happening there are a lot of things that get attributed to a handful of people. You have to understand college towns, they’re different than other places and you’re going to have things that go on,” said Monty.

Carbondale will start its search for a full time police chief this spring, and take approximately 3-4 months before making a final decision. 

To read the full report, click here.

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