Predicting outcomes for youth transferred to adult court

Carol A. Schubert, Edward P. Mulvey, Thomas A. Loughran, Jeffrey Fagan, Laurie Chassin, Alex R. Piquero, Sandra Losoya, Laurence Steinberg, Elizabeth Cauffman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Extant research regarding juvenile transfer has focused primarily on the negative effects of current policies, with little consistent and rigorous work on the variation among the adolescents transferred to adult court and their later adjustment in the community. Using a sample of 193 transferred youth from Arizona, we consider how certain individual characteristics are related to four post-release outcomes (antisocial activity, re-arrest, re-institutionalization, and gainful activity). We find considerable variability in outcomes, with adjustment significantly and consistently related to certain legal and risk-need factors. These results indicate that some transferred youth may experience negative outcomes, and that refinements to transfer policy may benefit from consideration of these factors in determining which serious adolescent offenders are most appropriate for transfer.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)460-475
Number of pages16
JournalLaw and human behavior
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2010


  • Adult transfer
  • Heterogeneity
  • Juvenile transfer
  • Outcomes
  • Waiver

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Psychology(all)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Law


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