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Juvenile Crime Statistics Essay

897 words - 4 pages

One of the biggest problems that the United States is faced with today is juvenile crime. Some risk factors associated with juvenile crime are poverty, repeated exposure to violence, drugs, easy access to firearms, unstable family life and family violence, delinquent peer groups, and media violence. Particularly the downfall of family life, the effect of the media on juveniles , and the increase of firearms available today have played a big role in the increase of juvenile crimes. Are juveniles as under control today as they were in the past? Crime plays a major role in today's society. The government follows a policy and has always followed the policy that no crime goes unpunished. So what has been done to decrease the overall numbers of juvenile crime?According to Howard N. Snyder (2003), the juvenile arrest numbers were higher than ever in 1994. From 1993 to 2001, however, this country has faced a dramatic decrease in juvenile crimes overall, particularly in violent crimes. For example, from 1993 to 2001 there was approximately one third of the amount of murders committed by juveniles in America. When it comes to juveniles being murdered in 2001, the number (1,630) had dropped nearly 40% compared to 1993 (2,840).With today's youth being exposed to more unconstructive substances such as drugs, media and alcohol how is it that juvenile crime has decreased in the past decade?Clearance StatisticsIn the Uniformed Crime Report (UCR) Program, a law enforcement agency reports that an offense is cleared by arrest, or solved for crime reporting purposes, when at least one person is: arrested, charged with the commission of the offense, or turned over to the court for prosecution. To qualify as a clearance, all the conditions previously mentioned must have been met. The UCR Program counts the number of offenses that are cleared, not the number of arrestees. Therefore, the arrest of one person may clear several crimes, and the arrest of many persons may clear only one offense. In addition, some clearances that an agency records in a particular calendar year, such as 2001, may pertain to offenses that occurred in the previous year or years.In certain situations, elements beyond law enforcement's control prevent the agency from arresting and formally charging the offender. When this occurs, the agency can clear the offense exceptionally. There are four program requirements that law enforcement must meet in order to clear an offense by exceptional means. The agency must have: identified the offender, gathered enough evidence to support an arrest, make a charge, and turn over the offender to the court for prosecution, identify the offender's exact location so that the suspect could be taken into custody immediately, or encountered a circumstance outside the control...

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