Contemporary Issues in Juvenile Justice


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2002) reported that suicide is the second leading cause of death among people between the ages of 14 to 25 in the United States. This research examined the effect race has on suicidal ideation among a cohort of delinquent girls in Texas. This study examined 2004 data provided by the Texas Juvenile Probation Commission on referrals to the juvenile justice system in Texas (N = 6850). Other variables such as age, family structure, and sexual abuse were also examined to determine the strength and effect that sexual abuse has on a juvenile becoming suicidal. The results revealed that race has a minor effect on suicidal thoughts among females in the juvenile justice system when controlling for sexual abuse, age, and family structure. Implications for practice are further explained.