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Juvenile Crime

explanatory Essay
1973 words
1973 words
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Juvenile Crime There has always been alarm and despair over escalating juvenile crime. In the 1950s there were reports about the mushrooming problems with youthful gangs in the big cities. In the 1960s we began to hear about a surge of juvenile crime in areas that had been regarded as virtually crime free. In the suburbs as well as the inner cities, youngsters were dropping out of school, using drugs and committing crimes. In the 1970s and 1980s, juvenile court dockets became increasingly jammed with criminal cases. According to the Department of Justice, the percentage increases in arrests from 1985 to 1994 have been greater for juveniles than for adults. During 1994 alone, 2.7 million juveniles were arrested. During the latter part of this century, juvenile courts that customarily provided social services in order to rehabilitate rather than punish lawbreakers were faced with an onslaught of children who were not simply wayward youths, but hardened repeat offenders. The 1980s witnessed an increasingly desperate outcry for courts to take more extreme measures to contain juvenile crime, which is assuming ever more serious forms. It is almost a daily occurrence to turn on the nightly news and hear stories of ever increasing youths committing crimes. Even more alarming are the ages of these offenders. In Lake Station, Indiana, three first-grade students were plotting to kill a classmate. They even went so far as to draw a map of where the slaying was to take place. In California a six year old boy was charged with attempted murder of a 3 month old baby. In Southern California, three 17 year old girls were charged with false imprisonment, conspiracy, aggravated mayhem and torture when they held a 15-year-old runa... ... middle of paper ... ...ming Explosion of Teenage Crime," Policy Review, Winter 1995, Heritage Foundation, 214 Massachusetts Avenue NE, Washington, DC 20002, (202) 546-4400 Sheppard, D. (1999). Strategies to reduce gun violence. OJJDP fact Sheet, (No.93) Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. Snyder, H.N., & Sickmund, M. (1995). Juvenile offenders and victims: A national report. Washington, DC: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. Snyder, H.N., & Sickmund, M. (1997). Juvenile offenders and victims: 1997 update on violence. Washington, DC: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. Ted Gest with Victoria Pope, “Crime Time Bomb: Seeking solutions to rising juvenile crime,” U.S. News, 3/25/96 Tutman, Lisa. Girls accused in murder plot. http://www.msnbc.com/local/WMAQ/99362.asp

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that there has always been alarm and despair over escalating juvenile crime. in the 1950s, there were reports about the mushrooming problems with youthful gangs in the big cities.
  • Opines that a child 6 years old is not criminally responsible and cannot form the intent to kill that is necessary for criminal prosecutions.
  • Explains that juveniles are affected by poverty, family breakdowns, neglect, alcoholism, and poor education. delinquent behavior is a neglected child's attempt to compensate for attention that he did not receive.
  • Explains that children who are in a gang are at risk. even youngsters who suddenly start getting bad grades could be prone to violence. numerous studies have been performed.
  • Explains that environment can affect behavior, but it can be less crucial than the choice the individual makes as they respond to the environment.
  • States that butts, jeffrey a., ph.d. (1996), delinquency cases in juvenile courts. ojjdp fact sheet.
  • Cites commissioner sharron kelley's white paper on youth, violence, the schools and the county toward a comprehensive, long-term approach.
  • Opines that it is not sufficient to blame poverty, the 1960’s, drugs, uncaring parents, short-sighted social programs, misguided justice programs for juvenile crimes.
  • Explains that environment isn't irrelevant, and external factors can inhibit or facilitate a person's inclination to break the law. gun homicides by juveniles have nearly tripled.
  • Cites eron, l.d, gentry, j.h., and schlegel, p. (1995). reason to hope: a psychological perspective on violence and youth.
  • Cites loper, cornell, and sickmund, as well as the office of juvenile justice and delinquency prevention.
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