Jeff Sessions says renewing the war on drugs will also reduce violent crime. Experts aren’t so sure.
The Trace - 05/24/2017
Drugs do, in fact, fuel crime. Dealers often turn to violence to carve out territories and enforce loyalty. And chronic drug users sometimes turn to crime to support their habits. But research has shown that boosting drug crime prosecutions often does not lead to a reduction in violent crime — and that in some instances, it can actually spark more of it.
“It’s pretty clear that there’s a correlation between drug arrests, crackdowns on drug markets and increase in violent crimes,” said Leo Beletsky, a professor of Law and Health Sciences at Northeastern University. “[But] the relationship is not inverse, as law enforcement would claim, but symbiotic — one causes the other, or at least they go hand-in-hand.”