Crossroads in Juvenile Justice
The Crossroads Study is a multi-site research project that is investigating the long-term impacts of formal versus informal processing of first-time male juvenile offenders. It is supported with grants from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and the U.S. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. The study Principal Investigator is Dr. Elizabeth Cauffman at the University of California-Irvine, with Dr. Laurence Steinberg at Temple University and Dr. Paul Frick at Louisiana State University serving as Co-Principal Investigators.
The two primary aims of the study are to:
- Examine the developmental consequences of adolescents’ involvement in the justice system and the costs and/or benefits of these outcomes. Areas of development include academic achievement, employment, psychosocial maturity, antisocial attitudes, mental health, social relationships, and (antisocial) behavior.
- Identify the characteristics of a youth and/or his offense that render him more or less prone to benefit from justice system involvement. Factors to be considered include neighborhood characteristics; family, peer, and romantic relationships; relationships with non-kin adults; psychosocial maturity; mental health, emotional and neurological functioning; and past behavior.
The study is following over 1,200 male juvenile offenders (ages 13-16) into young adulthood at three sites:
- Philadelphia, PA;
- Jefferson Parish, LA; and
- Orange County, CA.
Three studies have been published addressing the main study aims of the impact of juvenile justice involvement on the outcomes of youth in the sample:
Beardslee, J., Miltmore, S., Fine, A., Frick, P.J., Steinberg, L., & Cauffman, E.
(2019). Under the radar or under arrest: How is adolescent boys’ first contact with the juvenile
justice system related to future offending and arrests? Law and Human Behavior, 43, 342-357.
Cauffman, E., Beardslee, J., Fine, A., Frick, P.J., & Steinberg, L. (2021). Crossroads in juvenile justice: The impact of initial processing decision on youth five years after first arrest. Development and Psychopathology, 33, 700-713.
Robertson, E.L., Frick, P.J., Ray, J.V., Thornton, L.C., Wall Myers, T.D., Steinberg, L., & Cauffman, E. (2021). Do callous-unemotional traits moderate the effects of the juvenile justice system on later offending behavior? Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 62, 212-222.
Some other publications from the lab that have resulted from the Crossroads Study include:
Beardslee, J., Kan, E., Simmons, C., Pardini, D., Peniche, M., Frick, P.J., Steinberg, J., & Cauffman, E. (2021). A within-individual examination of the predictors of gun carrying during adolescence and young adulthood among men. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 50, 1952-1969.
Chen, J.M., Norman, J.B., Frick, P.J., & Cauffman, E. (2021). Out of the picture: Latinx and white male youths' facial features predict their juvenile justice system processing outcomes. Crime & Delinquency, 67, 787-807.
Fine, A., Cavanaugh, C., Donley, S., Steinberg, L., Frick, P.J., & Cauffman, E. (2016). The role of peer arrests on the development of youths’ attitudes towards the justice system. Law and Human Behavior, 40, 211-218.
Fine, A., Cavanagh, C., Donley, S., Frick, P.J., Steinberg, L., & Cauffman, E. (2017). Is the effect of justice system attitudes on recidivism stable after youths’ first arrest? Race and legal socialization among first-time youth offenders. Law and Human Behavior, 41, 146-158.
Fina, A.D., Beardslee, J., Mays, R., Frick, P.J., Steinberg, L., & Cauffman, E. (2022). Measuring youths' perceptions of police: Evidence from the Crossroads Study. Psychology, Public Policy, and Law, 28, 92-107.
Fine, A., Cavanagh, C., Frick, P.J., Steinberg, L., & Cauffman, E. (2017). Can probation officers identify remorse among male adolescent offenders? Psychological Assessment, 29, 754-761.
Fine, A., Steinberg, L., Frick, P.J., & Cauffman, E. (2016). Self-control assessments and implications for predicting adolescent offending. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 45, 701-712.
Mahler A., Simmons, C., Frick, P.J., Steinberg, L., & Cauffman, E. (2017). Aspirations, expectations and delinquency: The moderating effect of impulse control. Journal of Youth and Adolescence, 46, 1503-1514.
Myers, T.D.W., Salcedo, A., Frick, P.J., Ray, J.V., Thornton, L.C., Steinberg, L., & Cauffman, E. (2018). Understanding the link between exposure to violence and aggression in justice-involved adolescents. Development and Psychopathology, 30, 593-603.
Ray, J.V., Frick, P.J., Thornton, L.C., Myers, T.D.M., Steinberg, L., & Cauffman, E. (2019). Estimating and predicting the course of callous-unemotional traits in first-time adolescent offenders. Child Development, 55, 1709-1719.
Ray, J.V., Frick, P.J., Thornton, L.C., Steinberg, L., & Cauffman, E. (2016). Impulse control and callous-unemotional traits distinguish patterns of delinquency and substance use in justice involved adolescents: Examining the moderating role of neighborhood context. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 44, 599-611.
Ray, J.V., Frick, P.J., Thornton, L.C., Steinberg, L., & Cauffman, E. (2016). Positive and negative item wording and its influence on the assessment of callous-unemotional traits. Psychological Assessment, 28, 394-404.
Ray, J.V., Frick, P.J., Thornton, L.C., Wall, T.D., Steinberg, L., & Cauffman, E. (2017). Callous–unemotional traits predict self-reported offending in adolescent boys: The mediating role of delinquent peers and the moderating role of parenting practices. Developmental Psychology, 53, 319-328.
Shulman, E.P., Beardslee, J., Fine, A., Frick, P.J., Steinberg, L., & Cauffman, E. (2021). Exposure to gun violence: Associations with anxiety, depressive symptoms, an aggression among male juvenile offenders. Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, 50, 353-366.
Thomas, A.G., Ozbardakci, N., Fine A., Steinberg, L., Frick, P.J., & Cauffman, E. (2018). Effects of physical and emotional maternal hostility on adolescents’ depression and reoffending. Journal of Research on Adolescence, 28, 427-437
Thornton, L.C., Frick, P.J., Shulman, E.P., Ray, J.V., Steinberg, L., & Cauffman, E. (2015). Callous-unemotional traits and adolescents’ role in group crime. Law and Human Behavior, 39, 368-377.
Walker, T.M., Robertson, E.L., Frick, P.J., Ray, J.V., Thornton, L.C., Myers, T.D.W., Steinberg, L., & Cauffman, E. (2020). Relationships among callous-unemotional traits, future orientation, optimism, and self-esteem in justice involved adolescents. Journal of Child and Family Studies, 29, 2434-2442.
Walsh, H., Myers, T.D.W., Ray, J.V., Frick, P.J., Thornton, L.C., Steinberg, L., & Cauffman, E. (2019). Perceptions of police-juvenile contact predicts self-reported offending in adolescent males. Psychology, Crime, and Law, 25, 963-976.