Crime and drugs: The issues and literature

Duane C. Mcbride, Clyde B. Mccoy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


It is the purpose of this paper to examine the major research issues in the study of the relationship between crime and drugs and to examine the relevant research literature as it applies to those issues. Typologies are constructed for both criminal and drug using behavior and it is argued that the relationship between crime and drugs should be examined for each type of crime and each type of drug. A variety of issues regarding the nature of the relationship are discussed. These issues include the statistical association, causal priority, heroin use and increased, sustained and type of criminal activity, the direction of the causal effect and the ecology of crime and drugs. Finally, it is argued that a longitudinal design is necessary before the complexities of the nature of the crime-drug relationship can begin to be unraveled.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)137-152
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Drug Issues
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1982

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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