Immigration Policies and Crime

Faculty Publications
Matthew Hassett Ph.D.
Matthew Hassett Ph.D.
  • Matthew Hassett, The University of North Carolina at Pembroke


Immigration-related policies and practices have long been a topic of interest in criminal justice. Two competing sides of the immigration/crime debate have developed over time. One side supports restrictive immigration regulation out of the belief that an increased crime rate will accompany increased immigration while the other argues that this sentiment is an unfounded stereotype that has no empirical backing. To gain a fuller perspective on this multi-faced topic, a few things will be accomplished within this chapter. First, it is important to examine what has been shown to influence public perceptions of immigration and crime. Next, a discussion of the available research findings on the issue will ensue. Finally, the chapter will conclude with a summary of available evidence and an idea of what the immigration and crime issue might look like in the future.