3 years ago

Immigration enforcement awareness and community engagement with police: Evidence from domestic violence calls in Los Angeles

Ashley N. Muchow, Catalina Amuedo-Dorantes

The unwillingness of Latino and immigrant communities to interact with the police or report crime is a recognized concern of the Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD). Using data on calls for service dispatched to LAPD patrols from 2014 through 2017, we assess if heightened awareness of immigration enforcement, as captured by a novel Google Trends index on related searches, is associated with reduced calls to report domestic violence in predominately Latino noncitizen neighborhoods. We find that domestic violence calls per capita dropped in LAPD reporting districts with a higher concentration of Latino noncitizens as awareness about immigration enforcement increased. The decline provides empirical evidence of the "chilling effect" of immigration enforcement on Latino immigrant engagement with the police, underscoring the need to engage communities increasingly alienated by federal immigration policy.

Publisher URL: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0094119020300243

DOI: 10.1016/j.jue.2020.103253

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