Justice system involvement into young adulthood: comparison of adolescent girls in the public mental health system and in the general population

UMMS Affiliation

Department of Psychiatry, Center for Mental Health Services Research



Document Type


Medical Subject Headings

Adolescent; Adult; Child; Criminal Law; Databases, Factual; Female; Humans; Massachusetts; Mental Health Services; Public Health; Young Adult


Health Services Research | Mental and Social Health | Psychiatric and Mental Health | Psychiatry | Psychiatry and Psychology


We compared arrest onset and frequency and types of charges between a statewide cohort of adolescent girls in the public mental health system and girls of the same age in the general population to investigate important differences that could have policy or intervention implications. Girls in the public mental health system were arrested at earlier ages more frequently and were charged with more serious offenses than were girls in the general population. Our results strongly argue for cooperation between the public mental health and justice systems to provide mental health and offender rehabilitation in their shared population.

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Citation: Am J Public Health. 2009 Feb;99(2):234-6. Epub 2008 Dec 4. Link to article on publisher's site

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