This article investigates perceived danger among the nations confined youth. Although a number of studies have examined etiology of danger in prison, few have examined juvenile residents or focused on decomposing facility-level from individual-level effects. Addressing these limitations, this study draws on survey data at 48 juvenile institutions across the US and compares perceived danger between pooled and fixed-effects model specifications. The data showed juveniles who were younger and had prior maltreatment histories perceived more danger than others (within the same facilities). The data also showed that several variables ostensibly impacting perceptions were operating through contextual bias - including geographic background, criminal history, and race. For example, minorities perceived more danger than White adolescents overall (pooled models) but not within the same facilities (fixed effects). This may suggest minority adolescents serve time in harsher facilities - an understudied form of disparity in the criminal justice system.
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