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NCJ Number: 228996 Find in a Library
Title: Gang Membership, Drug Selling, and Violence in Neighborhood Context
Journal: Justice Quarterly  Volume:26  Issue:4  Dated:December 2009  Pages:644-669
Author(s): Paul E. Bellair; Thomas L. McNulty
Date Published: December 2009
Page Count: 26
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute on Drug Abuse
Bethesda, MD 20892-9561
Grant Number: 5 R03 DA15717-02
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study revisits prior research suggesting that gang member involvement in drug selling does not necessarily lead to increased violence, and that the relationship between gang membership, drug selling, and violence is unrelated to the neighborhood in which subjects reside, and tests two hypotheses regarding the intersection of neighborhood disadvantage, gang membership, drug selling, and violence.
Abstract: Results of the study indicate that (1) gang members who sell drugs are significantly more violent than gang members that do not sell drugs and drug sellers that do not belong to gangs; (2) drug sellers that do not belong to gangs and gang members who do not sell drugs engage in comparable levels of violence; and (3) an increase in neighborhood disadvantage intensifies the effect of gang membership on violence, especially among gang members that sell drugs. The overall findings strongly contradict prior research suggesting that gang member involvement in drug sales does not necessarily increase the frequency of violent behavior. This paper addresses two hypotheses pertaining to the intersection of neighborhood disadvantage, gang membership, drug selling, and violence. The first examines whether acquiring the status of gang member coupled with drug selling alters within-individual trajectories of violence. The second examines whether the relations referenced in the first hypothesis increase in magnitude as neighborhood disadvantage increases. Figures, tables, references, and appendix
Main Term(s): Gangs
Index Term(s): Drug business; Drug manufacturing; Environmental influences; Gang violence; Poverty and crime; Violence; Violence causes
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