Project Title

Criminal Activity in America's Sanctuary Cities

Presenters

Academic department under which the project should be listed

RCHSS - Government and International Affairs

Faculty Sponsor Name

April Johnson

I have no human subjects in my research.

Abstract (300 words maximum)

There has been an increase of debate on whether or not immigration has a relationship to crime rates in the United States. Sanctuary cities, a jurisdiction that does not cooperate with the federal government's immigration laws, have been singled out as "hotbeds" of crimes. This research paper explores the validity of the claims that sanctuary cities are places of exponential criminal activity. I analyzed twenty cities, ten sanctuary and ten non-sanctuary, to find if there is a relationship between immigration and crime rates. I use a variety of different types of crime to operationalize the dependent variable: violent crime, rape, murder, aggravated assault, and property crime. Preliminary results indicate that there is a complex relationship between immigrant presence, local policy, and crime rates within cities. In a time of increased political polarization and usage of hot topics in the political arena, an exploration of crime rates in sanctuary cities is critical to understanding if there is a genuine relationship between immigration and criminal activity.

Project Type

Poster

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Criminal Activity in America's Sanctuary Cities

There has been an increase of debate on whether or not immigration has a relationship to crime rates in the United States. Sanctuary cities, a jurisdiction that does not cooperate with the federal government's immigration laws, have been singled out as "hotbeds" of crimes. This research paper explores the validity of the claims that sanctuary cities are places of exponential criminal activity. I analyzed twenty cities, ten sanctuary and ten non-sanctuary, to find if there is a relationship between immigration and crime rates. I use a variety of different types of crime to operationalize the dependent variable: violent crime, rape, murder, aggravated assault, and property crime. Preliminary results indicate that there is a complex relationship between immigrant presence, local policy, and crime rates within cities. In a time of increased political polarization and usage of hot topics in the political arena, an exploration of crime rates in sanctuary cities is critical to understanding if there is a genuine relationship between immigration and criminal activity.