An analysis of Juvenile Crime Statistics

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It is evident that there is a significant decrease in juvenile arrests resulting from a decrease in rate of delinquency cases. The introduction of efficiency in the juvenile courts boosted a further drop on drug law violation, public order offenses and property offenses. Trends in the juvenile courts went con-current and parallel to the arrests made of persons below 18 years. A decline of 23% between 1998 and 2002 was recorded in the FBI violent crime index. This involved cases of criminal homicides, forcible rape, robbery and aggravated assaults.

The proportion in the number of cases involving juveniles at the age of 15 or younger varied and alternated with their offense. Younger juveniles were made accountable for a smaller proportion of arrests on drug and public order cases, than that of persons and property offense arrests. The percentage change in the number of predisposed cases does not relate directly to the number of arrested juveniles. Statistics prove that in comparing the numbers of 17 year-old arrested from 2002 with other juveniles, the arrest for the 17 year-olds kept taking a downward trend. This is explained by the fact that in 13 states, the 17 year-olds were excluded from the original jurisdiction of the juvenile court system. In these states the 17 year-olds are considered to be legal adults and are referred to criminal courts and not juvenile courts. Even though a larger number of adolescent get arrested and convicted in the juvenile courts, only a small number commit serious crimes (Moore, 2003).

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Although the rate in delinquency offences and arrests are greatly elevated in males than in females, the rate in female seems to increase more and consequently decrease less. In 2002 the delinquency arrest in male was four times greater than for females. By 2002 the rate in male had greatly reduced being less than three times the rate in females. In all the years it was evidenced conspicuously that the main offense leading to arrests, in relation with gender disparity was drug abuse and syndicates. Drug offenses committed by males in 2002 were four times more than that of females. In the recent past, the rates in males declined for every general offense categories.

Contrary to the male rates, the female drug offense rates increased for both drug and public order offenses. Personal offences in females remained constant and finally declined in relation to male rates for property offenses. Delinquency rates generally increased as the age also increased. However the increase was more significant in females than males. Average female offense rates increased from one age group to another in the sequential order. These rates hit highest of 77% compared to 59% in their male counter parts. Differences between male and female drug and assault cases have been greatest in the youngest and oldest age group brackets. In 2002 there was about twice an increase in these delinquency rate, for male youth age groups of 13 and 14 in comparison with the female assault and drug cases. For 10 year olds the male offense rates were 5 times female’s rates, while for 17 year olds the male offensive nature in juveniles hit more than 3 times that of female (National Report Series, 2001).

Drug offense case rates increased through 17 year olds females while person, property, and public order offenses increased in the 16 year age gap. The age specific trends in person offenses in female outlined greater increase than those related to males. In the recent years trends in the volume of offenses across racial divides have differed immensely. In 2002 the offense profile differed to a large extent in the racial diversity. However the property offense was the most committed and charged, of the delinquency cases disposed. Single parent families have been held responsible for juvenile crimes; though it is believed that if a child is brought up by a strict single parent they are less likely to be involved in criminal activities than those brought up by both parents.

Trucking juvenile arrest has been outlined as a more effective way to circumnavigate this menace that has proved distractive to the society. Evaluations involve combining several components for parents, youngsters and the larger environment. This includes the school and community. After the juveniles have been repatriated, they have to be traced and assigned a proper rehabilitation program to be followed strictly. Some programs used in find solutions have been deemed to elevate the levels of delinquency, “Many of these programs draw the youth together increasing their levels of misbehaviorsâ€Â (Moore, 2003). This further reinforces antisocial behavior.

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In the past decade, response to juvenile delinquency has been through setting of legislation policies. These policies have more punitive and sealed lines between juvenile and adult justice system. Despite studies, that it may be counterproductive to treat juveniles as adults, advancements have been made in this direction hence impacting negatively to the society and the juveniles being corrected. More juveniles are being detained with incarceration, though it is evident that they can be treated equally and effectively in the community than being confined. This can be done without necessarily imposing danger to the society.