Journal of Youth and Adolescence

, Volume 48, Issue 11, pp 2141–2151 | Cite as

The Combination of Living in High Crime Neighborhoods and High Rumination Predicts Depressive Symptoms among Adolescents

  • Andrew A. Gepty
  • Jessica L. Hamilton
  • Lyn Y. Abramson
  • Lauren B. AlloyEmail author
Empirical Research


Living in high crime areas and rumination each have been identified as risk factors for depression among youth, yet it is unclear how crime and rumination may synergistically increase the risk of adolescent depression. Adolescents (N = 309; 51% female, Mage= 12.9, SD = 0.61) completed self-report measures of rumination, depressive symptoms, and provided local addresses, which were used to match police district crime statistics. Approximately one year later, participants again reported depressive symptoms. Moderation analyses indicated that the tendency to ruminate exacerbated the relationship between violent crime rates, but not non-violent crime, and higher prospective levels of depressive symptoms among adolescents. These findings suggest that individual-level interventions that promote more adaptive emotion response styles may lower the risk of depression among adolescents residing in high crime areas.


Depression Adolescence Crime Rumination Urban 


Authors’ Contributions

A.A.G. conceived of the study, participated in the design, analysis, and interpretation, and drafted the manuscript; J.L.H. participated in the analysis, interpretation of the data, and draft of the manuscript; L.Y.A. wrote the grant that provided the study data; L.B.A. wrote the grant that provided the study data, participated in the study design, and helped to draft the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.


This research was supported by grants from the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) to L.B.A (MH 079369 and MH101168). J.L.H. was supported by a National Research Service Award from NIMH (F31MH106184) and T32HL082610.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards. All study procedures were approved by the Temple University Institutional Review Board (IRB).

Informed Consent

Written informed consent was obtained from mothers and written assent was obtained from adolescents.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Andrew A. Gepty
    • 1
  • Jessica L. Hamilton
    • 2
  • Lyn Y. Abramson
    • 3
  • Lauren B. Alloy
    • 4
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of PsychologyGeorge Washington UniversityWashingtonUSA
  2. 2.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of PittsburghPittsburghUSA
  3. 3.Department of PsychologyUniversity of Wisconsin–MadisonMadisonUSA
  4. 4.Department of PsychologyTemple UniversityPhiladelphiaUSA

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