Examining the role of criminal networks in causing children to develop longer and more serious crime trajectories "Greentown" - a case study
A large body of research exists in relation to youth crime. However less is known about the
contexts of children engaged in serious offending behaviour and participating in criminal networks.
This study, adopting a case study design, examines the behaviour of a criminal network operating
in Greentown in 2010-2011 . Greentown is a pseudonym for a Garda SUb-District in Ireland,
located outside Dublin. A network map was constructed for the study by Garda analysts using
police incident data to position individuals on the map who had been involved in either burglary or
drugs for sale and supply in Greentown in 2010-2011. Importantly this map indicated relationships
where two or more individuals were detected for the same offence. The map was used as a
reference tool to interview Greentown Garda about the activities and contexts of the individuals
identified. A technique called Battleships was designed to give the researcher access to case
related data, producing authentic narrative, while protecting the identities of the individuals
involved. The study finds that there was plausible evidence to suggest a network effect for certain
children in Greentown in 2010-2011. The study also identifies potential applications for the
methods used to progress further research in this area.