The causal connection:
more than coincidence?
IntroductionIt was shown in the previous chapter that drug use and crime were often
found together. Drug users (especially those who consumed heroin or
crack) were also likely to commit crimes and offenders (especially those
who committed shoplifting, general theft and drug supply offences) were
also likely to consume drugs. However, this does not mean that the two are
necessarily causally connected. They might be found together because they
are both caused by other factors or co-exist within a nexus of problematic
behaviours. This chapter examines the extent to which drug use causes
crime or crime causes drug use.The causal connection between drug use and crime has been investigated
in the research literature in three main ways:
|• ||'age-of-onset' studies that investigate whether drug use preceded crime
or crime preceded drug use in time;|
|• ||'changes-over-time' studies that investigate the relationship between
changes in involvement in drug use on crime and changes in involvement
in crime on drug use; and|
|• ||'qualitative' studies that investigate the causal connection by asking
drug users and offenders their views on whether the two are connected.|
The results presented below draw on our own systematic review of the
literature on the causal connection between drug use and crime (Holloway
and Bennett in prep.).
Questia, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning. www.questia.com
Book title: Understanding Drugs, Alcohol and Crime.
Contributors: Trevor Bennett - Author, Katy Holloway - Author.
Publisher: Open University Press.
Place of publication: Maidenhead, England.
Publication year: 2005.
Page number: 111.
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