Texas Criminal Illegal Alien Data

August 27, 2020

The Department of Public Safety and local law enforcement agencies in Texas participate in the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Priority Enforcement Program (PEP). Participation in PEP enables DHS to work with state and local law enforcement to take custody of individuals who pose a danger to public safety before those individuals are released into our communities. In Texas, PEP begins at the local level when an individual is arrested and booked by a Texas law enforcement officer for a criminal violation of Texas law. The arrested individual’s fingerprints are submitted to the Texas DPS and subsequently to the FBI for criminal history and warrant checks. This same biometric data is also sent to DHS’ IDENT database so that ICE can determine the person’s immigration status and whether the individual is a priority for removal, consistent with the DHS enforcement priorities. The immigration status information is returned to DPS by DHS. The following report is based upon the status indicators provided to the DPS. For the purposes of this report, the term “criminal alien” refers to an individual who has been identified as an alien by DHS and who has been arrested for a state criminal offense, typically a Misdemeanor B or higher, committed in Texas.

According to DHS status indicators, over 368,000 criminal aliens have been booked into local Texas jails between June 1, 2011, and April 30, 2022, of which over 252,000 were classified as illegal aliens by DHS.

Between June 1, 2011, and April 30, 2022, these 252,000 illegal aliens were charged with more than 420,000 criminal offenses which included arrests for 775 homicide charges; 50,443 assault charges; 7,826 burglary charges; 51,512 drug charges; 785 kidnapping charges; 20,502 theft charges; 32,868 obstructing police charges; 2,323 robbery charges; 5,292 sexual assault charges; 6,304 sexual offense charges; and 4,707 weapon charges.  DPS criminal history records reflect those criminal charges have thus far resulted in over 157,000 convictions including 359 homicide convictions; 19,117 assault convictions; 4,033 burglary convictions; 22,343 drug convictions; 259 kidnapping convictions; 8,504 theft convictions; 13,898 obstructing police convictions; 1,372 robbery convictions; 2,508 sexual assault convictions; 2,993 sexual offense convictions; and 1,675 weapon convictions.

Criminal Aliens Chart 1 
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These figures only count individuals who previously had an encounter with DHS that resulted in their fingerprints being entered into the DHS IDENT database. Foreign nationals who enter the country illegally and avoid detection by DHS, but are later arrested by local or state law enforcement for a state offense will not have a DHS response in regard to their lawful status and do not appear in these counts. However, in addition to the PEP program, DHS actively adjudicates the immigration status of individuals incarcerated in the Texas prison system. From 2011 to date, the Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) has provided DPS with information on more than 29,000 individuals who were identified by DHS as in the country illegally while they were incarcerated at TDCJ. 10,565 of these individuals were not identified through the PEP program at the time of their arrest. DPS does not know the current incarceration status of the individuals identified while they were incarcerated nor when their alien status was initially determined.

Lawful Presence Determined While Incarcerated at TDCJ

Between June 1, 2011 and April 30, 2022, these 10,565 individual identified as illegal aliens while in prison, but who were not previously identified through PEP, were charged with more than 8,000 criminal offenses which included arrests for 113 homicide charges; 1106 assault charges; 533 burglary charges; 1,573 drug charges; 47 kidnapping charges; 420 theft charges; 785 obstructing police charges; 330 robbery charges; 723 sexual assault charges; 320 sexual offense charges; and 193 weapon charges.  DPS criminal history records reflect those criminal charges have thus far resulted in over 4,000 convictions including 87 homicide convictions; 668 assault convictions; 357 burglary convictions; 911 drug convictions; 28 kidnapping convictions; 234 theft convictions; 362 obstructing police convictions; 254 robbery convictions; 522 sexual assault convictions; 230 sexual offense convictions; and 84 weapon convictions. 

Criminal Aliens Chart 2 
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Because DPS does not know the date these individuals were identified as illegal while in prison, the count of charges for which this population was arrested between June 1, 2011 and April 30, 2022 does not necessarily align with the size of the population of illegal aliens identified while in prison. A more accurate assessment can be seen when examining this population’s entire Texas criminal history and not just for offenses committed during this time period (see the Historical Data section of this report). However, for this report, in order to be consistent with the timeframe utilized to provide counts of arrest and conviction for the population identified through PEP, we have limited the arrest and conviction counts for prison identified illegal aliens to the same June 1, 2011 to April 30, 2022 time frame used for individuals identified through PEP.

Report Notes

These figures do not attempt to allege that foreign nationals in the country illegally commit more crimes than other groups. It simply identifies thousands of crimes that should not have occurred and thousands of victims that should not have been victimized because the perpetrator should not be here. It is also important to note that these figures represent the minimum number of crimes associated with criminal illegal aliens:

  • These figures only count arrests in Texas for state offenses.  These individuals may have criminal records in other states.
  • These figures only represent offenses and convictions that are associated with arrest events that occurred between June 1, 2011 and April 30, 2022.
  • The criminal activity for individuals identified as illegal while in prison is under represented for this time period because they may have been incarcerated during the time frame used in this report.
  • These figures do not count federal criminal charges.
  • These figures do not include similar data for foreign nationals who are lawfully in the country and commit state criminal offenses.
  • Individuals whose lawful presence was determined while in prison may or may not be currently incarcerated.

Historical Data

Because individuals identified as being illegally present in the country may have had a Texas criminal history prior to their immigration status being known to law enforcement, DPS has traditionally published criminal history data for an alien’s entire criminal history.

Lawful Presence Determined Through PEP

According to DHS status indicators, over 368,000 criminal aliens have been booked into local Texas jails between June 1, 2011, and April 30, 2022, of which over 252,000 were classified as illegal aliens by DHS.

Over the course of their entire Texas criminal careers, these 252,000 illegal aliens were charged with more than 615,000 criminal offenses which included arrests for 1,334 homicide charges; 72,985 assault charges; 18,383 burglary charges; 77,612 drug charges; 1117 kidnapping charges; 35,078 theft charges; 52,709 obstructing police charges; 4,439 robbery charges; 7,671 sexual assault charges; 8,786 sexual offense charges; and 9,045 weapon charges.  DPS criminal history records reflect those criminal charges have thus far resulted in over 266,000 convictions including 629 homicide convictions; 29,599 assault convictions; 9,287 burglary convictions; 37,457 drug convictions; 385 kidnapping convictions; 15,916 theft convictions; 24,598 obstructing police convictions; 2,445 robbery convictions; 3,886 sexual assault convictions; 4,516 sexual offense convictions; and 3,685 weapon convictions.

Criminal Aliens Chart 3 
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Lawful Presence Determined While Incarcerated at TDCJ

From 2011 to date, the Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) has provided DPS with information on more than 29,000 individuals who were identified by DHS as in the country illegally while they were incarcerated at TDCJ.  10,565 of these individuals were not identified through the PEP program at the time of their arrest.  DPS does not know the current incarceration status of the individuals identified while they were incarcerated nor when their alien status was initially determined.  Over the course of their entire Texas criminal careers, these 10,565 individuals identified as illegal aliens while in prison, were charged with more than 47,000 criminal offenses which included arrests for 1,930 homicide charges; 5,691 assault charges; 3,534 burglary charges; 6,835 drug charges; 350 kidnapping charges; 2,723 theft charges; 3,717 obstructing police charges; 2,422 robbery charges; 3,065 sexual assault charges; 1,183 sexual offense charges; and 1,563 weapon charges.  DPS criminal history records reflect those criminal charges have thus far resulted in over 26,000 convictions including 1,154 homicide convictions; 2,930 assault convictions; 1,989 burglary convictions; 3,999 drug convictions; 157 kidnapping convictions; 1,301 theft convictions; 1,704 obstructing police convictions; 1,641 robbery convictions; 1,989 sexual assault convictions; 735 sexual offense convictions; and 611 weapon convictions. 

Criminal Aliens Chart 4 
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The reports used to update the above data were ran on May 1, 2022. This data is accurate and true on the date the reports were created. Please be advised that data can change any time after the report was processed.