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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 136724 Find in a Library
Title: Mental Retardation and Delinquency (From Mainstreaming Retardation Delinquency, P 19-34, 1991, Richard S Greene, ed. -- See NCJ-136722)
Author(s): M E Wallace; S B Billick
Date Published: 1991
Page Count: 16
Sponsoring Agency: Technomic Publishing Co, Inc
Lancaster, PA 17604
Sale Source: Technomic Publishing Co, Inc
851 New Holland Avenue
Box 3535
Lancaster, PA 17604
United States of America
Type: Survey
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This paper explores attempts that have been made to deal with the mentally retarded and the behavioral problems they present. The juvenile justice system and mentally retarded juvenile offenders are described.
Abstract: Mentally retarded children and adolescents are at greater risk for behavioral disturbances than their peers. The mentally retarded population, however, is very heterogeneous with multiple factors contributing to the presence or absence of behavioral problems. Many studies have been conducted that espouse various theories of mental retardation and behavioral disturbance. On a more general level, society as a whole is responsible for dealing fairly and effectively with juveniles, juvenile offenders, and mentally retarded juvenile offenders. To this end, the founding premise of the juvenile justice system is that juveniles are incompetent to commit crimes with the same intent as adults because of immaturity in psychological development. As the juvenile justice system has evolved and is still evolving, concern over balancing the duty and right of the State to care for those who cannot care for themselves with the rights of those individuals against loss of liberty due to arbitrary and possibly harsh decisions by persons in authority has been prominent. Mentally retarded juvenile offenders are likely to differ in social profile from nonmentally retarded offenders. The mentally retarded juvenile is likely to be older, to have attended special education, to be nonwhite, to have attended less school, and to have less incidence of drug abuse problems. If mentally retarded offenders are to be justly served in the courts, a method must be available to examine the person and determine his or her realm of culpability and developmental competence. The psychiatric evaluation and disposition of mentally retarded offenders are discussed. 25 references
Main Term(s): Juvenile Delinquents with Intellectual or Developmental Disabilities; Juvenile offenders
Index Term(s): Juvenile delinquency factors; Offenders with Intellectual or Developmental Disabilities; Rights of minors
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