Using two estimates of undocumented immigration suggests that, on average, undocumented immigrants reduced or had no effect on crime in 154 US metropolitan areas, researchers report.

“Even after estimating the undocumented immigrant population in US metropolitan areas in two different ways, we found that undocumented immigrants had no significant effect on violent crime and actually had a significant negative effect on property crime,” says Robert Adelman, an associate professor of sociology at the University at Buffalo.

“This suggests that increases in the undocumented population is accompanied by decreases, on average, in property crime in US metropolitan areas.”

The findings in the Journal of Crime and Justice are consistent with the results of a 2017 study of the relationship between immigration and crime from an Adelman-led team. The earlier study used four decades of data on the documented foreign-born population in the US, which also showed, on average, no significant link between immigration patterns and increased crime in a sample of 200 US metropolitan areas.

The new study does not, either explicitly or implicitly, address whether or not individual immigrants do or do not commit crimes, Adelman points out.

“People from all backgrounds commit crimes. However, the bulk of the evidence indicates that, at least at the metropolitan level, in places where there are more immigrants, there also seems to be more economic and cultural vitality.”

Read the full article about the report showing that immigration doesn't increase crime by Bert Gambini at Futurity.