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Condiciones, Drogas, y La Carcel: Latino Arrestees in Miami, New York, San Antonio, and San Jose

NCJ Number
Criminal Justice Policy Review Volume: 17 Issue: 4 Dated: December 2006 Pages: 428-450
Loretta J. Capeheart; Elizabeth L. Sweet
Date Published
December 2006
23 pages
This study examined the relationships between Latino ethnic identity and drug use, arrest offense, and life conditions in Miami, New York (County), San Antonio, and San Jose.
Significant differences emerged with regard to arrest offense category, drug use, and life circumstances between Latinos and non-Latinos. In New York, Latinos were more likely than non-Latinos to have been arrested on felony charges while in Miami, Puerto Ricans and Cubans were more likely than Latinos in general to have been arrested on felony charges. In Miami and New York, Puerto Ricans and Cubans were more likely than Latinos in general to have been arrested on drug charges. In New York, non-Latinos were more likely than Latinos to have tested negative for drugs. The findings on assimilation and life conditions indicated that the Latinos in the sample were significantly less assimilated in terms of citizenship and language than were the non-Latinos and generally had diminished life conditions than non-Latinos. The findings suggest the need for policies that are specific to the diverse communities within the larger Latino population. The research also uncovered the need for more thorough and accurate criminal justice data regarding different ethnic populations, specifically Latinos. The study utilized data from the 2000 Arrestee Drug Abuse Monitoring (ADAM) program, focusing on data from the three largest U.S. Latino populations: Mexican, Puerto Rican, and Cuban. The analysis included data from four cities in which at least 30 percent of male respondents identified themselves as Hispanic: Miami, New York (County), San Antonio, and San Jose. The Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS) Windows version 11.0 was used to compare the data on Latinos with that of non-Latinos. Variables under examination included ethnicity, seriousness of suspected offense, urine drug test results, citizenship, work status, language, and education. Future research should focus on the reasons for increased risk of felony arrests among Latinos in New York and of Puerto Ricans and Cubans in Miami. Tables, notes, references


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