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Narcotics Use and Crime: A Multisample, Multimethod Analysis

NCJ Number
Date Published
January 1988
37 pages
Various addict behaviors that are relevant to the narcotics-crime relationship are examined throughout the course of the addiction career.
Anglo and Chicano methadone patients are studied and several methodological approaches are used, such as self-report interviews. The data are representative of numerous critical periods within the addiction career as well as periods immediately preceding and subsequent to it. Results converge to indicate that while involvement in property crime activities generally precedes the addiction career, after addiction occurs the highly elevated property crime levels appear to be regulated by similarly high narcotics use levels. During periods of curtailed narcotics use produced by treatment, property crime levels are significantly reduced and become extremely low after termination of the addiction career. These findings are compared with results previously reported, and new results are presented. For example, during lower narcotic use periods, employment and alcohol use reach maximum rates. Theorectical consideration of circumstances that significantly moderate the narcotics-crime relationship, such as geographic and sociodemographic differences, drug trafficking, and other behaviors, are discussed. 8 tables, 4 footnotes, and 72 references. (Author abstract modified)

Date Published: January 1, 1988