Fall 2015 Criminology Forum Series Welcomes Holly Nguyen

“Institutional Placement and Illegal Earnings: Examining the Crime School Hypothesis”
When Dec 11, 2015
from 12:00 PM to 01:00 PM
Where 406 Oswald Tower
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The current study considers whether or not correctional environments can facilitate the accumulation of “criminal capital” and might actually encourage offending by serving as a school of crime. Using panel data from a sample of 615 serious juvenile offenders who reported illegal earnings and information regarding institutional stays over a seven year period, we find two separate measures contribute to criminal capital within institutions: the prevalence of friends in the institution who have committed income generating crimes and the length of institutional stays as a cumulative dosage. We account for unobserved heterogeneity using fixed effects estimation and control for important time-varying confounders. Results not only undermine prison as a crime-prevention strategy but could also promote longer and more successful criminal careers.