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New FBI Data Confirms Falling Crime Rates in Arizona

Violent Crimes Are Down in the State’s Three Largest Cities

Many supporters of Arizona’s harsh new anti-immigrant law, SB 1070, continue to insist that the law is, in part, a crime-fighting measure.  However, the latest crime statistics released by the FBI confirm what previous data had already indicated: that Arizona is in the midst of a years-long decline in violent crime that pre-dates SB 1070, despite the growing number of unauthorized immigrants in the state during those same years.  Specifically, preliminary data released by the FBI on May 24, when compared to data from previous years, reveals that the numbers of violent crimes as a whole, and murders in particular, have been trending downwards for years in Arizona’s three largest cities: Phoenix, Tucson, and Mesa.  Arizona’s falling crime rates, together with a century’s worth of evidence indicating that immigrants are less likely to commit serious crimes than the native-born, cast serious doubt on the claims of some SB 1070 supporters that the law is in any way a useful crime-fighting tool.

Phoenix

  • The total number of violent crimes in Phoenix has fallen every year since 2006 {Figure 1}.

 

  • The number of murders in Phoenix has fallen every year since 2006 {Figure 2}.

 

 

 Tucson

  • The total number of violent crimes in Tucson fell from 2005 to 2007, rose slightly in 2008, and then dropped significantly in 2009 {Figure 3}.

 

 

  • The number of murders in Tucson fell from 2005 to 2007, jumped in 2008, and then dropped dramatically in 2009 {Figure 4}.

 

 

Mesa

  • The total number of violent crimes in Mesa fell from 2004 to 2006, rose somewhat in 2007 and 2008, and then dropped significantly in 2009 {Figure 5}.

 

 

  • The number of murders in Mesa has fallen every year since 2005 {Figure 6}.

Published On: Thu, Jun 17, 2010 | Download File