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Assessing the Effects of Recent Immigration on Serious Property Crime in Austin, Texas


In this article the authors examine the impact of recent immigration on rates of serious property crime across communities in Austin, Texas. The greater Austin foreign-born population has increased by more than 580 percent since 1980, and Austin is considered a "preemerging" immigrant gateway city to the United States. The changing population dynamics in Austin provide an excellent opportunity to study the effect of recent immigration on crime in a target destination for recent immigrants. Although interest in the relationship between violent crime and immigration to new locales is evidenced by recent studies that show less favorable outcomes for Latinos in new destinations, little attention has been directed to the relationship of recent immigration with serious property crime in new destinations. Negative binomial regression models with corrections for spatial autocorrelation indicate that recent immigration is not associated with an increased rate of burglary, larceny, or motor vehicle theft once important structural predictors of crime are controlled for. © 2013 by Pacific Sociological Association. All rights reserved.

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