Counter-Point on Arizona Crime

For a while I have been asking where the so-called immigrant-driven crime wave is in Arizona, given that crime rates have fallen much faster in AZ than in other parts of the country.

Tom Maguire argues that the overall drop in the crime rate in Arizona over the last decade or so hides a possible increase in crime rate in rural areas, which I suppose he might argue is due in part to Mexican immigrants.  Check out his data, it does in fact show an increase in the crime rate outside of MSA's (metropolitan areas) though the data is mute on causes.  One potential cause is simply mix shift -- it is clear from the enormous drop in population in these non-MSA areas that some areas classified as non-MSA in 2000 have been reclassified MSA in 2008.  So the comparison is not apples to apples, and some of the shift (or even all of it) could be the changing mix of areas in the metric.

To the extent the rural numbers are driven by immigrants, my sense it is due to the violent well-armed drug gang flavor of immigrants, a group not particularly intimidated by SB1070, as most of them are not spending their time at Home Depot in day labor recruiting areas waiting for the next Sheriff Joe roundup.


  1. riya:

    Drive into to send online cakes to Delhi for your loved ones and treat them with lavishness. You can also send fresh flowers and other gifts along with tasty cakes to Delhi. Bring smile to their faces by preferring to send from our wide range of tasty cakes, flowers and other amazing gifts for delivery in Delhi. For details, visit

  2. me:

    mmmm I love cake

  3. poulamimajumder:

    The visit was useful. Content was really very informative. From

  4. GaryP:

    Wondered if you had a comment on your Senator's (meaning AZ's) assertion that Obama said he no intention of trying to control the Southern border because it would hurt chances for "comprehensive immigration reform" (i.e. ammnesty).
    Of course, WH is screaming "liar, liar," while kinda implying (at least to my read) that this approach is good politics. It is very much in line with Obama's previous tactics. So whether you agree or not, isn't this quite plausibly the administrations game?

  5. Retardo:

    Today, I just ran into a blog post about the Bureau of Land Management posting signs near the border in Arizona warning people to stay away because it is an "active drug and human smuggling area". Found that via this post.

    This would be one of those "rural areas", clearly. Is it accurate? Up here in Maine, the only immigrant crime we worry about is Canadians not using their turn signals.

  6. Dr. T:

    I commented on this topic weeks ago, but apparently Warren Meyer ignored my comment and keeps pushing the belief that illegal immigrants commit crimes less often than native citizens.

    The primary reason for the falling crime rate in Arizona is the massive migration of retirees from other states. Millions of elderly retirees moved to Arizona over the past twenty years. The crime rate among these new residents is essentially zero. Therefore, the average crime rate in Arizona has decreased. However, the total crimes (both violent and nonviolent) per year have increased. Using the crime rates without correcting for changing demographics is misleading and inappropriate.

  7. Mark:

    Yeah Retardo, I read last week how the Government basically ceded land back to the Mexican government. And this week I read how the feds have allowed a small border town in the middle of he Mexican drug wars to fend for itself. More territory for Mexico.

    Lets keep the border open, cuz if there is just one good person coming across it must be all worth it.

  8. Mark:

    Here is an article on Mexican drug cartels declaring war on Nogales police

    Here is an article about the crime rate increasing in small border towns.

    There seems to be some difference of opinion on the subject of whether crime is going down uniformly in Arizona.

  9. caseyboy:

    Dr T makes a good point. There is also a possibility that the MSA area policed by Sheriff Joe's department has less crime because of his philosophy. Get tough on criminals and they flee for greener pastures, maybe a sanctuary city even.

    Gary P, you also make a great point. We saw the same WH strategy on healthcare. No incremental improvements because they could undermine the need for COMPREHENSIVE reform. Its not about fixing things, its about control. Say it with me, Its about control.

  10. allan:

    I see that facts are not relevant in your counter-point. Now you simply use "a potential cause" to provide a basis for defending your open border philosphy and to insult those who disagee with that philosphy.