As crime rates drop across the state, one tiny town in Oxford County stands out as the crime capital of Maine.

Mexico, which has a population of 2,681 and bills itself as “the Gateway to the Western Mountains,” has a crime rate that’s 50 percent higher than any other municipality in the state, according to new state data.

While it’s had higher rates in the past, it hasn’t seen the shrinking number of crimes that many other municipalities have seen during the past five years. Lewiston and Auburn are among the many towns and cities that are seeing substantially less crime than five years ago.

Crime is down by nearly a third in Auburn since 2011, while it’s been cut almost in half in Lewiston.

Overall, crime was down 9 percent across the state in 2016 compared to the year before. The five-year drop totals 39 percent.

But while Mexico isn’t seeing such dramatic gains, its numbers were better last year than they were in 2015. Each town’s rate is based on its population.

Mexico Police Chief Roy Hodsdon, who’s been on the job for two decades, blamed drugs for most of the crimes that take place in town.

A new state crime report released Wednesday tallies seven rapes, two robberies, five aggravated assaults, 44 burglaries, 118 larcenies and one motor vehicle theft in Mexico last year.

Hodsdon said he had to go back over the figures for September twice because he couldn’t believe there were so many burglaries and thefts.

A lot of it, he said, is caused by “drug addicts trying to keep their habit going,” with the opioid epidemic playing a big role.

Part of the town’s crime problem has another explanation as well: there’s a Walmart there. At least a third of the larcenies were chalked up by shoplifters at the big store, the chief said.

The fact that the small Police Department only has one officer available at night doesn’t help, Hodsdon said.

He said that Rumford and Mexico’s most problematic areas border the Androscoggin River and people often go back and forth between the towns.

“It’s all scrunched together,” Hodsdon said, and is responsible for many of the car burglaries and domestic violence that pushes up the crime rate in both towns.

Rumford’s crime rate is the third-highest in Maine, with Bangor just squeezing past it to land in second place.

The Maine Department of Public Safety said that overall crime in Maine declined by 8.7 percent last year to make the five-year drop just a tad shy of 39 percent.

“The fifth consecutive drop in crime is encouraging, but drugs are still the driving force behind most crime in Maine,” Public Safety Commissioner John Morris said in a prepared statement.

“Drugs still affect all Maine law enforcement, with much of the drugs coming into Maine from out-of-staters affiliated with gangs,” Morris said.

“Maine continues to be one of the safest states in the country. Unfortunately, the flow of deadly drugs from out of state is still driving crime in Maine,” Gov. Paul LePage said in a statement issued late Wednesay. “Local and state police are putting their lives on the line for us every day to fight these crimes.

Maine has a violent crime rate of about one offense for every 1,000 people. Nationally, the rate is four times as high.

Overall, the state’s crime rate was 17.84 last year, with urban areas generally posting higher rates and rural towns lower.

Across Maine, five municipalities posted rates above 40: Augusta at 41.37; Waterville at 43.13; Rumford at 43.39; Bangor at 43.89; and Mexico at 68.34.

Auburn’s rate was 34.3 while Lewiston posted 21.78 rate. Both have seen a dramatic drop in crime during the past five years. In 2011, Auburn’s rate was 50.43 and Lewiston’s was 40.36.

Several crimes statewide were more common in 2016 than in 2015, including rape.

Arson saw the biggest jump — from 91 incidents in 2015 to 209 in 2016 — but officials attribute the increase to a new reporting system.

Rapes rose from 373 across the state in 2015 to 383 last year.

Aggravated assaults, which involve serious injuries and usually a weapon, rose more than 9 percent in 2016. That’s an increase of almost 100 cases.

All of the other categories reported, including murders, robberies and thefts, were down last year.

There were 18 murders in 2016 compared to 23 the year before.

Robberies and burglaries were down 15 percent each, part of a steady drop for the past five years.

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