Psychology, Department of


Will They Tell? Weapons Reporting by Middle-School Youth

Eve M. Brank, University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Jennifer L. Woolard, Georgetown University
Veda E. Brown, Prairie View A & M University
Mark Fondacaro, City University
Jennifer L. Luescher, Bridgewater State Hospital
Ramona G. Chinn, Hawaii School of Nursing
Scott A. Miller, University of Florida

Document Type Article

Published in Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice (April 2007) 5(2): 125-146. Copyright 2007, Sage. DOI: 10.1177/1541204006296171. Used by permission.


Adding to the body of research that describes students who will bring weapons to school, the current research examined middle-school students’ willingness to report when they know someone has a weapon at school. The sample included 1,957 sixth, seventh, and eighth graders from 27 schools in five states. Overall, a majority of students indicated that they would be willing to report; however, there were significant effects for the conditions of reporting (such as anonymity) and effects for some demographic characteristics. Furthermore, students who perceived adult or parental involvement in their lives were more willing to report. In contrast, students with delinquent involvement (self or peers) were significantly less likely to report the presence of weapons.