Journal of Youth and Adolescence

, Volume 39, Issue 3, pp 315–325

Parental Suicidality as a Risk Factor for Delinquency Among Hispanic Youth

  • Wesley G. Jennings
  • Mildred M. Maldonado-Molina
  • Alex R. Piquero
  • Glorisa Canino
Empirical Research

Abstract

Several studies have examined the factors associated with juvenile delinquency, but this literature remains limited largely because it has not moved beyond traditional factors generally and because of the lack of research conducted on minority—especially Hispanic—youth. This study seeks to overcome these two limitations by using data from a longitudinal study of 2,491 Hispanic (Puerto Rican) youth ages 5–13 (48.5% female) socialized in two different cultural contexts, Bronx, New York and San Juan, Puerto Rico, in an effort to examine the relationship between parental suicidality and offspring delinquency. Results indicate that while traditional risk/protective factors and parental mental health issues relate to delinquency in expected ways, youths whose parents attempted suicide engaged in more frequent and varied delinquency over time. Implications for theory and future research are addressed.

Keywords

Risk/protective factors Suicide Hispanics Delinquency Longitudinal studies 

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wesley G. Jennings
    • 1
  • Mildred M. Maldonado-Molina
    • 2
  • Alex R. Piquero
    • 3
  • Glorisa Canino
    • 4
  1. 1.Department of Justice AdministrationUniversity of LouisvilleLouisvilleUSA
  2. 2.University of FloridaGainesvilleUSA
  3. 3.University of MarylandCollege ParkUSA
  4. 4.University of Puerto RicoSan JuanPuerto Rico

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