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Delinquent Activity Among Jewish and Arab Junior and Senior High School Students in Israel

NCJ Number
International Journal of Therapy and Comparative Criminology Volume: 53 Issue: 5 Dated: October 2009 Pages: 535-555
Moshe Sherer
Date Published
October 2009
21 pages
The study examined the differences in the frequency and type of delinquent activity of Jewish and Arab high school students and whether discriminatory practices might be present in the judicial system.
Findings indicate that Jewish students committed more types of delinquent acts compared to their Arab counterparts and had many more problems in school. These findings support the concern of discriminatory treatment by the judicial system. This study compared self-reported criminal activities of students in Israel with official data. The study examined whether the higher rates of apprehension of Arab youths for delinquent acts was valid, or whether such data represented discriminatory practices of the criminal justice system. Cultural factors have been proposed as an explanation for aggressive and violent behaviors and as a possible root of criminal activity. Data were collected from a random sample gathered from 8 Arab and 8 Jewish junior and senior high schools; 1,001 participants, but only 906 were selected for study. Study participants self-reported criminal activity in a questionnaire, with all participants assured of anonymity. Minor differences were found on demographic variables, affirming the representativeness of the sample. Tables and references