Border Walls and Crime: Evidence From the Secure Fence Act

39 Pages Posted: 15 Nov 2019

See all articles by Ryan Abman

Ryan Abman

San Diego State University

Hisham S. Foad

San Diego State University - Department of Economics

Date Written: November 6, 2019

Abstract

Despite a lack of rigorous empirical evidence, reduced crime is often touted as a potential benefit in the debate over increasing border infrastructure (i.e. border walls). This paper examines the effect of the Secure Fence Act of 2006, which led to unprecedented barrier construction along the US-Mexico border, on local crime using geospatial data on dates and locations of border wall construction. Synthetic control estimates across twelve border counties find no systematic evidence that border infrastructure reduced property or violent crime rates in the counties in which it was built.

Keywords: border walls, crime, migration, synthetic control

JEL Classification: K42, H54, F22

Suggested Citation

Abman, Ryan and Foad, Hisham S., Border Walls and Crime: Evidence From the Secure Fence Act (November 6, 2019). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3482004 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3482004

Ryan Abman

San Diego State University ( email )

5500 Campanile Drive
San Diego, CA 92182
United States

Hisham S. Foad (Contact Author)

San Diego State University - Department of Economics ( email )

5500 Campanile Drive
San Diego, CA 92182
United States

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