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Mortality in a Group of Formerly Incarcerated Juvenile Delinquents

NCJ Number
Date Published
January 1990
3 pages
This study examined a sample of 118 former seriously delinquent juveniles (97 males and 21 females) to determine whether this subpopulation of adolescents is at high risk for early violent death and contributes to the rising mortality rates in this age group. The subjects had all been incarcerated at a correctional school in Connecticut and had received psychiatric, neurological, and psychoeducational evaluations as part of a project documenting the characteristics of incarcerated juveniles.
During a 7-year follow-up study, researchers found that there had been an extremely high mortality rate among the group. Seven of the sample had died before their 25th birthday; this mortality rate was about 58 times that of their age group in the national population. All had died violent deaths, making the violent death rate of the group about 76 times that of their age group in the national population. Because the authors were unable to identify any clear predictors of early death among those who died as compared to the rest of the delinquent sample, they conclude that all seriously delinquent youth should be considered at special risk. 1 table and 20 references (Author abstract modified)

Date Published: January 1, 1990