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Like Godfather, Like Son: Exploring the Intergenerational Nature of Crime

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  • Randi Hjalmarsson
  • Matthew J. Lindquist

Abstract

Sons (daughters) with criminal fathers have 2.06 (2.66) times higher odds of having a criminal conviction than those with noncriminal fathers. One additional paternal sentence increases sons’ (daughters’) convictions by 32 (53) percent. Compared to traditional labor market measures, the intergenerational transmission of crime is lower than that for high school completion but higher than that for poverty. At the intensive margin, the intergenerational crime relationship is as strong as those for earnings and years of schooling. Parental human capital and parental behaviors can account for 60–80 percent of the intergenerational crime relationship. Paternal role-modeling also matters.

Suggested Citation

  • Randi Hjalmarsson & Matthew J. Lindquist, 2012. "Like Godfather, Like Son: Exploring the Intergenerational Nature of Crime," Journal of Human Resources, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 47(2), pages 550-582.
  • Handle: RePEc:uwp:jhriss:v:46:y:2012:ii:1:p:550-582
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    References listed on IDEAS

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