Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science

First Advisor

Dr. Kristine Artello

Second Advisor

Dr. Nancy Morris

Third Advisor

Dr. Jay Albanese


The United States has unusually high rates of violence among developed nations, including the victimization of and perpetration by youth. Using Institutional Anomie Theory (IAT) as the theoretical framework, this study analyzes the relationships between social institutions and crime and the interactive relationships among the institutions in a sample of Virginia localities. Multivariate analyses are conducted to produce additive and multiplicative models, and simple slope analyses are conducted to clarify interaction/moderation effects. Findings yield mixed support for IAT. Localities with higher levels of monthly welfare per recipient (a measure of polity) have lower juvenile violent crime arrest rates, and welfare moderates the relationship between income inequality and juvenile violent crime arrests. Controlling for all variables, no support was found for the direct effects of any other institution on juvenile violent crime arrests. Policy recommendations include maintenance of welfare programs and improvement of work participation supplementary programs.


© Linh Thi Tran Nguyen

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission


Included in

Criminology Commons