Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention

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Does exposure to deviant peers affect whether individuals participate in general delinquency? Peers have an influence on the developing individual where the individual shares definitions favorable to them (Snyder, Dishion, Patterson, 1982). Findings in literature suggest that delinquent youths are involved in a relationship between peers delinquent behavior and a respondent’s own delinquency (Warr, 1996). Shaw and McKay, in 1931, discovered that more than 80% of individuals had deviant peers, and they have a strong tendency to commit delinquent acts in the company of others. Studies found that relationships of peer delinquency from self‐report delinquency surpasses that of any other independent variable, regardless of whether the focus is on different types of crime (Haynie, 2001). On the other hand, lets note that exposure to deviant peers is not the only factor that leads adolescents in committing general delinquency. There are several factors that can lead a child into committing crime such as family, community, and school factors (Herrenkohl et. al, 2000). A debate remains over the means essential to the relationship between deviant peers and their effects on indiviudals. This is important because it illustrates that normal interaction with peer groups sways people to commit acts that wouldn’t be normal. Using the data from the National Youth Survey (Wave 7), I will investigate whether or not exposure to deviant peers affects whether adolescents participate in general delinquency.
Literature Review
Deviant Peers on Delinquency
Matsueda and Anderson analyzed the dynamic of delinquent peers and delinquent behavior. They test hypothesis from learning and interactional theories where peer associations creates delinqu...

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...erican Journal of Sociology, 106(4), 1013-1057.
Herrenkohl, T. I., Farrington, D. P., Brewer, D., Catalano, R. F., Harachi, T. W., & Cothern, L. (2000). Predictors of youth violence (pp. 1-10). Washington, DC: US Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.
Matsueda, R. L. (1982). Testing control theory and differential association: A causal modeling approach. American sociological review, 489-504.
Matsueda, R. L., & Anderson, K. (1998). The dynamics of delinquent peers and delinquent behavior*. Criminology, 36(2), 269-308.
Snyder, J., Dishion, T. J., & Patterson, G. R. (1986). Determinants and consequences of associating with deviant peers during preadolescence and adolescence. The Journal of Early Adolescence.
Warr, M. (1996). Organization and instigation in delinquent groups*. Criminology, 34(1), 11-37.
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