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NCJ Number: 201073 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Effect of Local Life Circumstances on Female Probationers' Offending
Journal: Justice Quarterly  Volume:20  Issue:2  Dated:June 2003  Pages:213-239
Author(s): Marie L. Griffin; Gaylene S. Armstrong
Date Published: June 2003
Page Count: 27
Sponsoring Agency: US Dept of Health and Human Services
Rockville, MD 20857
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study examined the influence of changes in local life circumstances on the short-term criminal behavior of female drug-abusing probationers.
Abstract: The study built on the previous research on women, social bonds, and criminal behavior, drawing on both Sampson and Laub's (1993) use of social control theory to explain change in the criminal life course and Horney et al.'s (1995) incorporation of local life circumstances in the examination of short-term change. A total of 195 women were interviewed between January 1999 and August 1999. The majority of the interviews were conducted in the women's jail facility in Maricopa County, AZ. The remainder were interviewed in the community after they were released from jail. All participants were self-identified as individuals with a substance abuse problem and had volunteered to participate in the Women's Treatment, Services, and Supervision Network. For the previous 36-month period, the women were asked to recall and record activities related to housing, living arrangements, social relationships, education, employment, children and family, stressful events, and travel. Further, the women were asked about the extent of their criminal activity for each month of the 36-month period. Using a binomial hierarchical generalized linear model, the study examined the probability that certain "discrete life events" acted to modify or change criminal behavior in the short term. Drug use had a robust effect on a woman's criminal activity, increasing the probability of involvement in drug dealing by 50 percent and nondrug crimes by 45 percent. The findings also indicate that drug-dealing activity was significantly inhibited by employment, involvement in a relationship with a significant other, and children living with the woman. Although the study found only partial support for a gendered response to short-term change in interpersonal bonds suggested by previous research, the findings support the notion that the organization of gender influences women's likelihood of engaging in certain types of criminal behavior. Research should continue to explore the way in which gender moderates the social forces that influence changes in patterns of criminal activity and the context of criminal activity. 4 tables, 62 references, and appended supplementary data
Main Term(s): Community-based corrections (adult)
Index Term(s): Behavior modification; Drug offenders; Drug Related Crime; Economic influences; Female offenders; Gender issues; Probationers; Social conditions
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