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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 148988 Find in a Library
Title: Origins of the Problem of Juvenile Delinquency: The Growth of Juvenile Prosecutions in London in the Late Eighteenth and Early Nineteenth Centuries (From Criminal Justice History: An International Annual, Volume 14, 1993, P 17-41, 1994, Louis A. Knafla, ed. -- See NCJ-148987)
Author(s): P King; J Noel
Date Published: 1994
Page Count: 25
Sponsoring Agency: Greenwood Publishing Group
Westport, CT 06881-5007
Sale Source: Greenwood Publishing Group
88 Post Road West
P.O. Box 5007
Westport, CT 06881-5007
United States of America
Type: Historical Overview
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Historians have documented a major transition in attitudes to, and policies toward, youthful offenders in England during the late 18th and early 19th Centuries. During the 19th Century, youthful offenders were no longer tried as adults and instead, juvenile delinquency was established as a major social problem and source of concern for the middle class.
Abstract: This paper analyzes records of the Old Bailey between 1790 and 1820, specifically a sample of 6,600 property offenders from the London Criminal Registers, to test theories about why, when, and in what forms juvenile delinquency captured public attention. The authors conclude that neither urbanization nor industrialization was directly responsible for the growth in juvenile property crime prosecutions in and around London during this time period. While social, economic, and demographic changes may have contributed to this trend, it appears that the changing attitudes and actions of victims, magistrates, police, and prison reformers provide the main key in understanding the rise of juvenile prosecutions. The declining use of capital punishment and the idea of the rehabilitation of offenders, combined with financial incentives offered to prosecutors and police agencies and the use of capital sanction in cases involving private stealing, eroded victims' initial reluctance to prosecute juveniles. 3 figures and 54 notes
Main Term(s): Juveniles
Index Term(s): Criminology; England; Foreign juvenile justice systems; History of juvenile justice
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