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Adolescent police experience has a detrimental effect on the outcome of later life

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The criminal justice system has changed dramatically in the last half century, and these changes have increased the likelihood that adolescents will encounter police. A new study looked at how adolescent police experience, directly or compensatoryly (for example, by witnessing encounters), affected future direction during the transition to adulthood. .. The study concluded that adolescent police experience could serve as an important life course event that adversely affects later life outcomes.


The study was conducted by researchers at the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA), the University of California at Irvine (UCI), Johns Hopkins University, and South Florida University.Coming soon Criminology, A publication of the American Criminal Society.

Future orientations can include personal expectations, aspirations, and plans. Young people with a more positive future orientation Better healthIt is an educational and professional achievement, and can overcome adversity better than young people who are less aggressive in their future directions. This type of outlook can change with events that change the value of future outcomes or perceptions of achieving goals, so future direction (or lack thereof) is a powerful determinant of criminal offenses.

“We tried to determine if contact with the police affected the future direction of the youth and under what conditions,” explained Alexander Testa, an assistant professor of criminology. To do. Criminal justice At UTSA, which led the research. “From the framework of the life course, future direction is important to capture an individual’s perspective on major future milestones and life course events that could be harmed by the side effects of contact with criminal justice. is.”

The researchers used data from the Pathways to Resistance study. Longitudinal study Of 1,354 serious offenders from Arizona and Pennsylvania tracked from adolescence to early adulthood. Mostly male, non-white youth were 14 to 17 years old when recruited for research.

This study analyzed participants’ experiences with the police. This includes face-to-face encounters (eg, police suspension, the most common form of adolescent criminal justice contact) and surrogate contact (eg, meeting someone else in a police encounter, or police learning. ) Both are included. Involve family and friends). To measure future direction, researchers used measures of the participants’ perceived potential and the importance of achieving various milestones (eg, good education, career, family life). have). They also respond to police contact characteristics (ie, youth perceptions of procedural injustice) and adolescent demographic characteristics (ie, gender, race / ethnicity). I checked how it was shaped.

The study found that even in the absence of unjustified treatment, contact with police can cause cognitive changes at critical times in life, reducing an individual’s future prospects. Specifically, the survey found that:

  • Personal and surrogate police contact was negatively associated with personal change in future direction compared to the absence of additional police contact.
  • Exposure to police contact was negatively linked to future direction, regardless of how legitimate or unjustified police contact was perceived. In short, the youth’s perception of procedural justice did not significantly change the link between police contact and future direction.
  • The negative link between police contact and future direction was greater in white adolescents than in black or Hispanic adolescents. Researchers suggest that this may be because contact with police has become a predominantly anticipated event among minority youth.

“Given the importance of future directions for subsequent contacts, Criminal justice system For future health and general life success Negative results Kristin Turney, a professor of sociology at the University of California, Irvine and co-author of the study, states that contact with police will influence the future direction of youth. police Promote greater connections with civilian life in ways that monitor young people and direct them in the future.

The authors cannot generalize their findings to other contexts, including adolescents from other geographic areas (eg, adolescents in rural and suburban areas) and individuals who are less serious or have no unpleasant experience. It points out some limitations of their research, including that. In addition, they say their results should be interpreted as associations rather than causality.


Racial Role in Homeless Youth Contact with Police


For more information:
Police Contact and Future Direction from Adolescence to Young Adulthood: Discoveries from the Road to Desire Research, Criminology (2021).

Courtesy of the American Criminal Society

Quote: Survey: Youth Police Experiences, Life Results After Obtained from https://phys.org/news/2021-10-adolescents-police-repercussions-life-outcomes on October 15, 2021 Has a detrimental effect on (October 15, 2021). html

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Adolescent police experience has a detrimental effect on the outcome of later life

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