5 Facts You Should Know About The Juvenile Justice System – Allie Dashow

  1. Interestingly enough, for the past century juveniles have been treated differently than adults who have also committed crimes. Some argue that the reason for this is that a child is not fully developed and therefore has more potential to change. If he or she is provided with the appropriate and needed services one might not need, it is believed that that child will not turn back to crime again in the future. Because the child has not fully matured, some say they are less responsible for their actions. Is this true? Is this fair? (DiNitto & McNeece, 2008, p. 325).

2. Also, did you know that there are three different types of categories a juvenile may it into within the court system? Those include dependent or neglected, a status offender, or delinquent. A status offender would include running away or missing school, or essentially something that would not be considered a crime if it was committed by an adult. However, a delinquent act is something that would be considered a crime if it was committed by an adult (DiNitto & McNeece, 2008, p. 325).

3. In regards to crime rates, “in 2002 the juvenile arrest rate for violent crimes was the lowest it had been since 1980.” (DiNitto & McNeece, 2008, p. 325). I wonder why that is. Furthermore, the crime rate in 2002 was half of what the crime rate was in 1994! (Snyder, 2004).  However, juveniles account for 17% of all arrests. Additionally, the female juvenile offender population is “growing at a faster rate than the male offender population” (DiNitto & McNeece, 2008, p. 325). However, maybe this is due to the fact that more females are being arrested nowadays than compared to the past.

4. It is most common for juvenile offenders to end up with probation. However, a large portion of them end up in residential settings such as detention centers, training schools,or group homes, camps, and ranches (DiNitto & McNeece, 2008, p. 328).

5. Unfortunately, akin to the adult offender population, there are more juvenile offenders of color placed in residential centers as opposed to those who are white. Furthermore, back in 2003 2/3 of those juveniles in custody were minorities (DiNitto & McNeece, 2008, p. 328).

Sources:

DiNitto, D., & McNeece, C. (2008). Social work: Issues and opportunities in a
          challenging profession (3rd ed.). Chicago, IL: Lyceum Books
Snyder, H. N. (2004, September). Juvenile Arrests 2002. Retrieved February 18, 2016, from https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/ojjdp/204608.pdf
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