Phoenix Law Enforcement Association

City Notes Significant Decrease In Crime

The September 2008 edition of “Notes” newsletter included in Phoenix residents’ water bills contained a story titled “Crime Down Sharply.”

The article cites an overall decrease of 8.5% in violent crimes and an overall decrease of 10.4% in property crimes per 100,000 residents.

Over the last several months, your Association has also heard from sources within the department that emergency calls for service are down by 10% and that stolen vehicles are down by as much as 20%-30%.

A VCU (Vehicular Crimes Unit) detective that we spoke to within the last few months made the comment that their case loads were all caught up and went on to tell us that this is a minor miracle since this is typically a detail where you are never caught up.

These statistics are interesting considering the population of the city continues to grow rather than to shrink. This would lead one to ask what the factors are that are causing the drop in crime rates.

It’s hard to say for certain since it is very difficult to get empirical data on something with so many moving parts. Your Association feels that there are several factors which are having a direct impact on lowering crime rates in our city.

  1. A less restrictive and more proactive policy with regard to dealing with illegal immigration (many other Valley law enforcement agencies have either led the way or followed suit in this arena).
  2. County Attorney Andrew Thomas who is aggressively prosecuting those who violate the State’s human smuggling law.
  3. County Sheriff Joe Arpaio who has taken the initiative in having his Deputies cross trained and screening incoming jail prisoners regarding immigration status.
  4. Bringing the E-Verify employee screening system online.
  5. Taking enforcement action against those employers who willfully and knowingly violate the Employer Sanctions Law.
  6. Taking a strict approach on enforcing the law with regard to towing and impounding vehicles for 30 days (ARS 28-3511) for those drivers found operating with suspended or revoked driving privileges or for those who have never had a license issued to them.

PLEA members have clearly seen the connection between illegal immigration and increased crime rates. PLEA believes the points cited above demonstrate that multiple law enforcement agencies working in concert can have a significant impact on the reduction of crime.

CLICK HERE to view the “Notes” newsletter insert from the September 2008 City of Phoenix water bill.

CLICK HERE to read the news release from the County Attorney’s Office documenting the relationship between crime and illegal immigration.

CLICK HERE to read the White Paper Study on illegal immigration issued by the County Attorney’s Office.