Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Did Katrina Refugees Increase Crime in Houston & San Antonio?

The evidence is suggestive, but not totally conclusive. The city of San Antonio has not tried very hard to learn whether or not victims and perpetrators came from New Orleans. Houston did, and got federal money. Both cities saw a spike in crime after the refugees arrived. San Antonio's crime rate had been falling prior to their arrival. Here are the articles:

Katrina crime: Perceived or real?

S.A. killings show few ties to storm.

Remember, to prove cause and effect, you need ceteris paribus conditions. Does this analysis meet that criteria?

UPDATES. Ken Rodriguez, a columnist for the Express-News, thinks the answer is yes. Here is the link

Ken Rodriguez: Here's the unvarnished truth about Katrina crime: It happened

Here are two more articles from the Express-News

In one area with evacuees, robbery is routine

Complex with Katrina evacuees became a criminal haven


champ said...

if we consider Ceteris Paribus, I would have to say due to an increase in population some Refugees helped increase the crime rate. They could be accountable for much more, but the cops said they don't ask people where they are from when they're captured. I'm not a crime genius or anything, but I thought one of the basic things to find out about a perpetrator is where he/she is from. I could be wrong though. I will do a little more analysis and leave a better comment, depending on what you have to say.

Cyril Morong said...

I'm also surprised that more has not been done to find out where people are from. If the feds are going to help out and San Santonio is stretching the budget, we need to know. If they had gotten the data, we would have a much clearer picture of what the cause was or wasn't.

Anonymous said...

More modern findings seem to disagree with the idea these crime spikes were unique to areas that took in Katrina refugees.

Cyril Morong said...

Thanks for dropping by and commenting. How did you happen to see this post after nearly 6 years?

I went to the link you provided and one thing the abstract says is

"Contrary to much popular speculation, only modest effects were found on crime."

Have you read the entire article? Can you say what "modest" means? That is, give some actual numbers?