Sociology, Department of


Date of this Version



Published in Violence and Victims 25:1 (2010), pp. 101–115; doi: 10.1891/0886-6708.25.1.101 Copyright © 2010 Springer Publishing Company. Used by permission.


Little is known about how the social environment of homeless youth contributes to their risk and how it varies for different types of victimization. As such, the current study examines the constructs of victimization theories in order to investigate the potential risk for physical and sexual victimization among homeless young adults. Results revealed that running at an earlier age, running more often, sleeping on the street, panhandling, deviant peers associations, and not having a family member in one’s network are associated with more physical victimization. Being female, a sexual minority, having an unkempt physical appearance, panhandling, and having friends who traded sex are associated with more sexual victimization. Overall, we find that the constructs differed in their ability to explain sexual versus physical victimization.

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