New Study Disputes Trump Claim That Deportations Reduce Crime

A new study from the University of California, Davis contradicted the Trump administration’s claim that deportations help lower crime rates, The New York Times reports.

One of Trump’s first moves after his inauguration was to bring back the “Secure Communities” deportation program, which creates a database of undocumented immigrants arrested by local police and shares it with ICE. Proponents claim helps reduce crime and helps police solve crimes by better cooperating with federal authorities. The program, which was created under George W. Bush, was scrapped by Obama in 2014.

Data reviewed by Cal Davis researchers shows that some areas rolled out the program and deported as much as 0.5% of their entire population or more.

“The change in crime in these areas was similar to the change in areas that deported only a few people, or no one,” The Times reported, citing the study.

Deportations did not change crime rates:

The study looked at more than 1,000 local jurisdictions and their crime rates before and after they adopted the Secure Communities Program.

Researchers found a consistent result: there was no significant change in crime rates in areas with large numbers of deportations compared to those that deported few people or none at all.

“Researchers compared deportations data from the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) at Syracuse University with crime rates from the F.B.I. Uniform Crime Reporting program, finding no relationship between deportations and crime,” The Times reported. “They also saw no effect of deportations on violent or property crime, regardless of how aggressive deportations were in a given area.”

No trends at all showed a decrease in violent or property crime in areas with the largest numbers of deportations.

Other studies show deportations do not reduce crime:

"Research demonstrates that immigrants over all and undocumented immigrants in particular are less likely to be arrested than the native-born population; that both are less likely to be incarcerated; and that immigration does not raise an area’s local crime rates (neither does undocumented immigration)," the Times reported.

The study also disputed the claim that the program helps police solve more crimes.

Just as with crime, data on crime clearance rate showed similar rates between areas with high numbers of deportations and those with few or none at all.


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