The Relationship Between Immigration And Crimeby Doug Mataconis
The San Jose Mercury News reports on a study of California’s immigrant, including illegal immigrant, population:
Countering widespread belief, a new report shows California’s foreign-born population – including illegal immigrants – makes up only a sliver of the state’s population of inmates.
The report by the Public Policy Institute of California, released Monday, also suggests the foreign-born population, which makes up more than a third of the state’s adults, plays a disproportionately smaller role in serious crime.
“Crime, Corrections, and California: What Does Immigration Have to Do with It?” gives one of the clearest glimpses yet into the impact of immigrants and immigration on the state’s justice system.
It also aims to dispel the perception that cities with large foreign-born populations are criminal hot beds, with several California cities showing a dip in police activity amid recent immigration waves.
Among the study’s conclusions:
• Foreign-born men make up about 35 percent of the state’s adult male population, but they are roughly 17 percent of the state’s overall prison inmates.
• U.S.-born men are jailed in state prisons at a rate more than three times higher than foreign-born men and are 10 times more likely to land behind bars.
• Male Mexican nationals ages 18 to 40 – those more likely to have entered the country illegally – are more than eight times less likely than their U.S.-born counterparts to be imprisoned.
• Those who entered the country when they were 1 year old or younger make up about 0.8 percent of those institutionalized.
More from the San Francisco Chronicle:
“Our research indicates that limiting immigration, requiring higher educational levels to obtain visas or spending more money to increase penalties against criminal immigrants will have little impact on public safety,” [report co-author Kristen] Butcher said in a statement.
So much for that canard, I suppose.