Antecedents to gang membership: Attachments, beliefs, and street encounters with the police Article

Lurigio, AJ, Flexon, JL, Greenleaf, RG. (2008). Antecedents to gang membership: Attachments, beliefs, and street encounters with the police . 15(4), 15-33.

cited authors

  • Lurigio, AJ; Flexon, JL; Greenleaf, RG

fiu authors

abstract

  • In a large sample of public high school students in Chicago, this study explored gang members' attitudes toward school and the police, prosocial beliefs, and experiences with the police. It also investigated the relationship between fear of police and fear of gangs and youth's membership in gangs. Gang members were compared with nongang members (who lived in the same communities) on these variables in order to identify differences between the two groups. In particular, we were interested in whether self-reported experiences with the police were related to gang membership after controlling for overall attitudes toward school and prosocial beliefs. Our findings indicated that gang membership was related to being stopped by the police, disrespected by the police, and fearful of gangs but unrelated to school commitment or prosocial beliefs. We discuss the implications of these results for improving police-youth relationships, especially between youth and officers who work in specialized gang units.

publication date

  • June 1, 2008

start page

  • 15

end page

  • 33

volume

  • 15

issue

  • 4