Saturday, July 17, 2010

Illegal Immigrants and their impact on Maricopa County Arizona

Illegal Immigrants in Maricopa County Arizona.  That is the name of a report i found at icarizona which reposted this September 2008 report on Illegal Immigration from then Maricopa County Attorney Andrew Thomas (Dowloand PDF).  It seems icarizona's purpose is to illustrate the dramatic difference between Andrew Thomas and the current Maricopa County Attorney.

My purpose in posting it here is entirely different.  I want to help educate the rest of the world on the state of affairs in Phoenix, in Maricopa County, and in Arizona in general.  The document is heavily footnoted and linked but the new County Attorney has moved some of the documents.  A secondary purpose is to address those who whine (yes, i said whine!) that we are focusing on the Southern border rather than the Northern border.  The implication is that we are racist and focusing on the brown people.  That claim is ludicrous since the Southern border is where the vast majority of the problem is occurring.  The report shows that claim to be what it is - misguided racism on the part of those making the claim.

Some highlights:
Executive Summary
  • In June 2008, the Arizona prison system reported a population of 5,173 Mexican Nationals.
  • In 2004, the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) estimated the annual cost of incarcerating illegal immigrants in Arizona prisons and jails equal to $80 million. (2008 estimate is $114 million annually)
  • Law enforcement and criminal prosecutions linked to illegal immigration costs the Arizona border counties of Cochise, Pima, Santa Cruz, and Yuma millions annually. A recent study estimates that these four border counties in Arizona costs were $26.6 million in 2006.
  • In 2005, the Government Accounting Office (GAO) conducted sample studies using a pool of more than 55,000 illegal immigrants
    • The group was arrested a total of 459, 614 times, averaging 8 arrests per illegal immigrant
    • They were arrested for a total of 700,000 offenses, averaging 13 offenses per illegal immigrant.
    • 12% of these offenses were violent offenses like robbery, assualt, and sex-related crimes.
    • 15% were propety related offenses like burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft and property damage.
    • 45% were drug or immigration offenses
    • the remaining 28% were for other offenses (traffic, DUI, fraud, weapons violations, obstruction of justiced, etc)
    • 80% of all arrests occurred in three states: California, Texas, and Arizona. (Yes, Peggy, Arizona is indeed a border state just like Texas! - K)
Illegal Immigration Statistics

...the U.S. Department of Homeland Security reported the state's illegal immigrant population to be 530,000.  This is a 62% increase from 330,000 they reported in 2000.  In 2007, the Center for Immigration Studies reported Arizona's illegal immigrant population to be 9% (579,000 people).  A study from the Udall Center for Studies in Public Policy reports the non-citizen immigrant population in Arizona to be 619,800 people.... a reasonable average of these studies is that approximately 9% of Arizona's population is comprised of illegal immigrants.

Maricopa County
...An analysis has found that in 2007 18.7% of defendants sentenced in Maricopa County Superior Court were illegal percentage of illegal immigrant defendants sentenced for felonies in Maricopa County Superior court is 21.8%
Click this picture.  Red is the % of that crime committed by illegals.  Blue is the % of those crimes by by people who are legally present in this country.

Illegal Immigration's Impact on Maricopa County Crime
...16.5% of violent crimes can be linked to illegal immigrants.  In 2007, 18,100 violent crimes were reported to Maricopa County law enforcement....2,973... committed by illegal immigrants....the financial hardship imposed on Maricopa County citizens totaled approximately $59 million dollars in 2007.
...18.5% of poperty crimes can be linked to illegal immigrants.  In 2007, 165,743 property crimes were reported to Maricopa County law enforcement.... 6,684...committed by illegal immigrants....the financial hardship imposted on Maricopa County citizens in property alone totaled approximately $24 million in 2007.

Illegal Immigration Legislation
Senate Bill 1372 made human smuggling a crime...Class 4 felony punishable with up to three years in prison.
Proposition 100... prohibits bail for any person who is charged with a serious felony offense and who is unlawfully in the U.S.  As a result illegal immigrants who are charged with serious felonies can no longer be released.
Legal Arizona Workers Act (LAWA)...allows a court to suspend or revoke the business license of employers found to have knowlingly hired illegal workers.  The bill also strengthened the State's ID theft laws against persons who use false documents to obtain employement.
LAWA amendments to punish an employer who knowingly accepts false identification from an applicant for employment.
2010 (not from the 2008 report, of course), SB 1070 was passed codifying into state law that state, county, and local law enforcement are required to enforce federal law.

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