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NCJ Number: 126815 Find in a Library
Title: Juvenile Crime in Northern Ireland: A Decade of Change
Author(s): E F Jardine
Date Published: 1990
Page Count: 15
Type: Survey
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The juvenile justice system in Northern Ireland deals with children between 10 and 16 years of age, has a juvenile court that plays a central role in processing status and delinquent offenders, and uses probation service as the court's principal source of background information on offenders and the principal organ of supervision in the community.
Abstract: There are several reasons why it is possible to hypothesize a comparatively high rate of juvenile crime in Northern Ireland versus the United Kingdom as a whole. Unemployment has been traditionally higher, household income is lower, and Northern Ireland is characterized generally by more violence and terrorism. Juvenile convictions for both indictable and nonindictable offenses, however, declined substantially between 1979 and 1989. Overall, the number processed through the courts dropped from 2,646 in 1979 to just over 1,000 in 1989. The decline in court convictions coincided with a sharp rise in police cautioning, from 1,725 cases in 1979 to a peak of 3,460 in 1985. The use of cautioning has had a major and positive impact on the juvenile justice system in Northern Ireland, and the removal of less serious offenders from the court system has affected sentencing patterns. The principal residential option for juvenile offenders involves training schools. The government's deinstitutionalization objective is being achieved through fewer young people being committed to prison or residential care and through a reduced duration of residence for those who are committed. A lower level of juvenile involvement in terrorist activity, compared to the 1970's, has resulted in only a small number of juvenile offenders entering the adult prison system. 3 tables and 2 figures
Main Term(s): Foreign juvenile delinquency; Foreign juvenile justice systems
Index Term(s): Foreign crime statistics; Juvenile court statistics; Juvenile offenders; Northern Ireland
Note: Paper prepared for the 42nd Annual Meeting of the American Society of Criminology, November 1990, Baltimore
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