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Juvenile Crimes Essay

1414 words - 6 pages

Juvenile crime is a growing problem that endangers virtually every American. Juvenile delinquency is enormously damaging to the health and well-being of the nations families and communities. A juvenile crime can consist of DUI, robbery, rape, minor in possession, weapon in possession anything an adult can be charged with. Individuals under the age of eighteen who commit these crimes can be charged as a juvenile delinquent. Statistics show that most juveniles that commit crimes are in a gang; weather its street related or school related. The average cost of caring for an incarcerated juvenile is more than $40,000 a year. Vandalism in schools cost more than two-hundred million a year, and vandalism directed at personal property is even more expensive. Most juveniles commit crimes because of peer pressure or broken homes. When a minor commits a crime, a state will classify them as a juvenile delinquent.
James Alan Fox indicates that for children who are not supervised after school, statistics show that crime by and against juveniles peaks at 3 p.m. and again at 6 p.m. Juveniles are responsible for one in five violent crimes. Guns are used in eight out of ten homicides committed by juveniles. Nearly 40 percent of juvenile crime occurs after school, whereas for adults the crime rate is highest before and after midnight. The report also says that Juveniles ages 12-17 were more likely to be victims of violent crime, including rape, robbery, and simple assault, than adults 25 and older (qtd. in Juvenile Violent Crime Rating Alarming). Edward Zigler states that the 1970s brought a wave of change to the nation’s juvenile justice system. Common alternatives were counseling, social work, and restitution programs in which offenders were obliged to compensate their victims by fines or community service. Programs that concentrate on training children in classroom social skills and teaching alternatives to aggressive behavior have shown some promise (n.pag). Charles Puzzanchera indicates that in 2008 law enforcement agencies in the United States made an estimated 2.11 million arrests of persons younger than age 18 (n. pag). Statistics show that, ‘the number of youths aged 14 and younger who have been charged with homicide has jumped by 43 percent in the past twenty years. Charles Puzzanchera also indcates in 2008 11% (1,740) of all murder victims were younger than age 18. More that one-third of all juvenile murder victims was younger than age 5, but this proportion varied widely across demographic groups. The juvenile murder arrest rate in 2008 was 3.8 arrests per 100,000 juveniles ages 10-17 (n. pag.). District Attorney Gil Garcetti, proposed that all juveniles accused of murder be tried as adults regardless of their age, prior record or mitigation circumstances (qtd. In Schiraldi n. pag.). More than a decade before Garcetti’s proposal, New York began the practice of automatically trying juveniles over age 12 who were accused of murder as adults....

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