IZA DP No. 7299: The Impact of Legalized Casino Gambling on Crime
published in: Regional Science and Urban Economics, 2017, 66, 1-15.
We examine the impact of legalized casino gambling, including Indian casinos, on crime. Using county-level data between 1994 and 2009, the impact that casino legalization had on crime is examined. Our results show an increase in crime associated with casinos in some circumstances, but not others. Crime impact results are quite sensitive to data, sample periods and econometric specifications. In addition to known Part 1 offenses (assault, burglary, larceny, robbery, rape, and auto theft), we also examine various arrest classifications, including driving under the influence (DUI), fraud, and prostitution. Again, casinos are associated with a statistically significant increase in some circumstances but not in others, with results depending on econometric specification. In no circumstances, however, are casinos and crime significantly negatively correlated.