Thugs and Thieves: Differential Correlates for Violent Behavior and Stealing

Joanne Savage, American University

There has been broad consensus among criminological theorists and others that criminals do not "specialize" (see, for example, the work of Farrington). Evidence suggests that high rate offenders commit a variety of crimes. Nevertheless, there are many studies that find distinguishing characteristics of violent offenders and the nature of violent crime and it is the case that only some offenders commit violent offenses. The present paper emphasizes the importance and the possibility of predicting violent behavior and presents data from the National Youth Survey that are instructive regarding differential correlates of violent offending and stealing.

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Updated 05/20/2006