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Co-occurrence of Delinquency and Other Problem Behaviors

NCJ Number
Date Published
November 2000
8 pages
Publication Series
This Bulletin examines the co-occurrence or overlap of serious delinquency with drug use, problems in school and mental health problems.
Findings to date indicate that preventing delinquency requires accurate identification of the risk factors that increase the likelihood of delinquent behavior and the protective factors that enhance positive adolescent development. The Bulletin focuses on persistent serious delinquency and persistent problem behavior occurring for 2 years or more. A large proportion of persistent serious delinquents were not involved in persistent drug use, nor did they have persistent school or mental health problems. Although fewer than half of persistent offenders were persistent drug users, the problem that co-occurred most frequently with persistent serious delinquency was persistent drug use. For males, as the number of persistent problems other than delinquency increased, so did the likelihood that an individual would be a persistent serious delinquent. Serious delinquency did not always co-occur with other problems. Finally, the degree of co-occurrence between persistent serious delinquency and other persistent problems was not overwhelming. However, the size of the overlap suggests that a large number of persistent serious delinquents face additional problems that need to be addressed. Notes, tables, figures, references

Date Published: November 1, 2000