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Juveniles as Offenders
Offender Self-reporting
Q: Why is the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth a valuable research tool?
A: One of the strengths of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth is its ability to assess what deviant and delinquent behaviors cluster together.
  • Analysis of various survey items demonstrates the connection between drug use or sale and other problem behaviors, such as carrying handguns, gang membership, and alcohol consumption.
  • Youth who had ever used marijuana were more likely to have sold marijuana (24% vs. <1%), carried a handgun (21% vs. 7%), or been in a gang (14% vs. 2%) at some point than youth who had never used marijuana.
  • Youth who had ever sold marijuana were more likely to have sold hard drugs (i.e., cocaine, LSD, or heroin) (40% vs. 1%), carried a handgun (35% vs. 8%), or been in a gang (24% vs. 4%) than youth who had never sold marijuana.
  • Active marijuana users (i.e., youth who had used marijuana during the month prior to the survey) were more likely to have consumed alcohol (78% vs. 14%) or carried a handgun (12% vs. 2%) during that period than youth who did not use marijuana.
  • Youth who had carried a handgun in the last 12 months were also more likely to have been in a gang than youth who did not carry a handgun during this period (15% vs. 1%).

Internet citation: OJJDP Statistical Briefing Book. Online. Available: http://www.ojjdp.gov/ojstatbb/offenders/qa03503.asp?qaDate=19990930. Released on September 30, 1999.

Adapted from Snyder, H. & Sickmund, M. Juvenile Offenders and Victims: 1999 National Report, p. 58–59. Washington, D.C.: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, 1999.

Data Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics. The National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1997, version 1.0 [machine-readable data file]. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Labor, 1998.

 

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