skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 156246 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Drugs, Crime and Criminal Justice (From Young Men and Drugs -- A Nationwide Survey, Research Monograph 5, P 81-97, 1976)
Author(s): J A O'Donnell; H L Voss; R R Clayton; G T Slatin; R G W Room
Date Published: 1976
Page Count: 17
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute on Drug Abuse
Bethesda, MD 20892-9561
Publication Number: (ADM) 76-311
Sale Source: National Institute on Drug Abuse
National Institutes of Health
6001 Executive Boulevard, Room 5213
Bethesda, MD 20892-9561
United States of America
Type: Research (Applied/Empirical)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Although the association between drug use and criminality is widely recognized, there is considerable disagreement concerning the nature of the relationship.
Abstract: Preliminary analysis of findings from several studies does not provide clear support for the idea that drug use leads to crime or that criminal activity leads to drug use. With the exception of prescription forgery and shoplifting, there appears to be no consistent temporal relation between drug use and criminal activity on which an argument for a causal link can be developed. Rather, the temporal order of marijuana use and a number of self-reported criminal acts seem to be a function of the age at which marijuana is first used. For several offenses, among men who admitted them as well as marijuana use, those who used marijuana by the age of 16 years reported they committed a criminal act for the first time a year later than the one in which they first used marijuana. In contrast, among men who used marijuana at the age of 17 years or older, most committed a criminal act before they used marijuana. The fact that drug use sometimes occurs first and at other times criminal behavior precedes drug use indicates that if there is a causal connection between drug use and criminal behavior, it is not a simple one. 13 tables
Main Term(s): Drug Related Crime
Index Term(s): Crime Causes; Crime patterns; Drug use; Male offenders; Marijuana
Note: DCC
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.