Forty-nine percent of black men have been arrested at least once by age 23, and so have over 40 percent of all men.
Those are the big takeaways from a study in the April issue of Crime & Delinquency that has gained new relevance in light of the events unfolding in Ferguson, Missouri. University of South Carolina’s Robert Brame, University of Albany’s Shawn Bushway, University of Maryland - College Park’s Ray Paternoster, and University of North Carolina - Charlotte’s Michael Turner estimated “cumulative arrest prevalence” by race and gender using the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (NLSY). They focused on the 1997 cohort, born between 1980 and 1984. The respondents were surveyed at ages 18 and 23, which would have been between 1998-2002 and 2003-2007, respectively.
The authors group together all non-black, non-Hispanic people, a category that includes white, mixed race, Asian-American, and American Indian people. Disturbingly, if not surprisingly, black men are significantly more likely to have been arrested at both age 18 and age 23 than non-black, non-Hispanic men. Hispanic men are somewhere in between, but the difference between them and both black and non-black, non-Hispanic men isn’t statistically significant: