An empirical portrait of youthful offenders who sell drugs

Jeffrey J. Shook, Michael Vaughn, Sara Goodkind, Heath Johnson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

26 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: This study explores the drug dealing behaviors of youthful offenders who sell drugs and examines differences between these offenders and those who do not sell drugs across a variety of measures including types of drugs sold, substance use and behaviors. Methods: The sample consists of 227 youthful offenders in two juvenile residential facilities. Chi-square and t-tests are used to assess differences between youth who sell marijuana, hard drugs, and prescription drugs and those youthful offenders who do not sell drugs across a variety of measures. Results: The majority of youthful offenders in our sample are involved in drug dealing and many are extensively involved. Drug dealing, however, is not tied solely to economic motivations but is connected to patterns of substance use. Youthful offenders who sell drugs are also engaged in patterns of delinquent and other risky behavior at higher levels but the magnitude of differences in substance use and delinquent or risky behaviors varies by type of drugs sold. Conclusions: Youthful offenders who sell drugs are embedded in patterns of substance use and delinquent behavior that differ from those who do not sell drugs and interventions for these youth need to be targeted at multiple levels.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)224-231
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Criminal Justice
Volume39
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2011 May 1

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Social Psychology
  • Applied Psychology
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Law

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