“Messin’ With Drugs…You Could Lose Your Life”: the Effect of Victimization on Routine Activities and Risk Management
Men’s Drug Use and Re-Entry Challenges in St. Louis: The Role and Impact of the Gateway Foundation
University of Missouri-St. Louis
Decades of research have helped to identify that victims and offenders are not opposing parts of the crime equation (Esbensen & Huizinga, 1991), but often are intertwined as part of a homogeneous population (Lauritsen & Laub, 2007). Those with the greatest likelihood of experiencing personal or property victimization are those who report offending or substance using behaviors (Gottfredson, 1984; Jensen & Brownfield, 1986; Sampson & Lauritsen, 1990). This increased victimization risk is commonly related to the amount of time spent in situations with greater proximity to motivated offenders and a lack of supervision (Cohen & Felson, 1979; Hindelang, Gottfredson, & Garofalo, 1978; Jensen & Brownfield, 1986). Individuals who are particularly at-risk for victimization are those involved in substance use and abuse and street offending (Anderson, 1999; Biernacki, 1986; Decker & Van Winkle, 1996; Jacobs, 2000; Jacques & Wright, 2008; Sutherland, 1937; Waldorf, 1973). Victimization experiences can have disparate affects on individuals‘ perceptions and behaviors (Ferraro, 1995; Hindelang et al., 1978). These effects can range from no perceived effects (Hindelang et al., 1978), subtle effects (Hindelang et al., 1978), and significant effects (Decker & Lauritsen, 2002; Jacques & Wright, 2008; Sutherland, 1937) on individual behavior. In particular, the effect of exposure to crime and victimization may influence risk management techniques. The current study will attempt to address whether victimization experiences lead to behavioral change and whether individuals recognize or acknowledge this change. The study uses qualitative interviews with formerly at-risk adult men involved in an alcohol and drug rehabilitation center in a major metropolitan area.
Vecchio, J. Michael. 2010. “Messin’ with drugs…you could lose your life”: The effect of victimization on routine activities and risk management. In Men’s Drug Use and ReEntry Challenges in St. Louis: The Role and Impact of the Gateway Foundation, ed. Jody Miller. Research report submitted to the Gateway Foundation, the Missouri Department of Corrections, and the Missouri Department of Mental Health.
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© J. Michael Vecchio, 2010.
Author Posting. © J. Michael Vecchio, 2010. This report is posted here by permission of the author for personal use, not for redistribution. The article was published in Men’s Drug Use and Re-Entry Challenges in St. Louis: The Role and Impact of the Gateway Foundation, 2010.