Illegal immigrants subject to deportation pose no greater risk to public safety than those who cannot be deported when they are released from jail, a study by RAND researchers has found. The study, published in this month’s edition of the journal Criminology and Public Policy, found age, criminal offenses and other traits are the primary factors in determining whether illegal immigrants re-offend, and not their legal status, reports the Torrance, Calif., Daily Breeze.
“That is our finding in a nutshell,” said Laura Hickman, a researcher at RAND. “We set out to test a real straightforward question. It was a question about whether deportable aliens are cycling through the local criminal justice system.” The study compared deportable immigrants, people who entered the United States illegally, overstayed their student or other visas or committed other violations, with non-deportable immigrants – those with legal documents or those who have become naturalized. The study examined nearly 1,300 male immigrants released from jail during a 30-day period. It watched them for a year to see who returned to jail and whether they were deportable or non-deportable immigrants.