Juvenile Crime: The Facts
The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention states that juvenile courts in the U.S. deal with almost 1.4 million cases involving minors under the age of 18 a year. Our juvenile crimes problem makes the United States the largest incarcerator of any developed country’s youth population. To break it down:
Children under the age of 16 at the time of court referral account for 52% of total delinquency cases handled in the United States.
- 59% of juvenile cases are person offense cases
- 53% are property offense cases
- 49% are public order offense cases
- 41% are drug law violation cases
These juvenile cases affect everyone in the community. A third of juvenile delinquency cases involve female defendants. Furthermore, sixty-four percent of these cases handled include white youths, with the white population accounting for the majority of drug offense cases. On the other hand, 33% of delinquency cases involve black youth, with the larger proportion of crimes being person offense. Finally, sixty percent of boys classified as “bullies” around ages 12 to 15 end up with at least one conviction on their criminal record by the time they reach 24 years old.
Juvenile Crime: How To Prevent Them
The best way to avoid minor crimes to prevent opportunities for delinquent behavior. It is important to prevent juvenile crimes because it helps the child develop into a responsible citizen. Furthermore, it saves the public’s tax dollars as the government spends billions a year dealing with juvenile delinquents. The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention states that for every dollar invested in delinquency-prevention, taxpayers save seven to ten dollars.
There are various ways to prevent juvenile delinquency:
- Enroll your child in after school programs that fill any unsupervised hours.
- Teach your kids about the lifelong effects of risky behaviors such as drugs, sex, and crime.
- Take advantage of conflict resolution curriculums that provide your children with awareness.
- Involve your children in mentoring programs that feature positive role models.
- Community service programs that teach awareness of the needs of others within the community.
Programs such as these teach children how to interact with their peers in a healthy manner while giving them the supervision and structure they need.
Juvenile Crime: What To Do As A Parent
As a parent, educate yourself about the threats youths face today. It helps to learn red flags for problems, such as dropping grades or loss of enthusiasm. Your child needs supervision, even if they seem mature for their age. It is your responsibility to prevent opportunities for your teen to get into trouble. Their undeveloped brains do not understand the breadth of consequence for their actions, so unless you teach them, they will end up learning from experience.
You have killer intuition as a parent– use it! If you think something is off with your kid, you are probably in some way right. However, do not assume you know exactly what is wrong, either. Throwing accusations at your child will only push them away. Facilitating open communication and honesty is important. Your home should be a safe environment You may not like what you hear once you open the gates of communication, but it’s better than ignoring things altogether.
You have a responsibility as a parent to protect and help your children however possible. It is totally okay to do things like call the parent of a friend to make sure they are in fact staying at their house. Additionally, get help when you need it regarding your teen. If your kid makes a mistake and ends up with a juvenile delinquency charge, you do not have to face it alone. Hiring criminal defense lawyer Chad F. Bank ensures your child goes through the legal process swiftly. Call for a consultation today at 401-229-5088.