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NCJ Number: 149861 Find in a Library
Title: National Trends in Offenses and Case Dispositions (From Critical Issues in Crime and Justice, P 157-170, 1994, Albert R Roberts, ed. -- See NCJ-149851)
Author(s): C A McNeece
Date Published: 1994
Page Count: 14
Sponsoring Agency: Sage Publications, Inc
Thousand Oaks, CA 91320
Sale Source: Sage Publications, Inc
2455 Teller Road
Thousand Oaks, CA 91320
United States of America
Type: Survey
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The author describes the history of data collection on juvenile offenders and offenses, explains major policy shifts in juvenile justice over the past 50 years, and traces recent trends in juvenile offender processing.
Abstract: Since 1929, the primary source of information on juvenile courts has been the Juvenile Court Statistics series. In 1957, the Children's Bureau initiated a data collection program to produce national estimates of juvenile court actions through a stratified probability sample of over 500 courts. In 1975, the National Center for Juvenile Justice received a grant from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention to estimate the number of delinquency cases disposed of by juvenile courts between 1985 and 1989. Official statistics indicate that roughly 1.8 to 2.2 million juvenile arrests are made yearly but that only about half of those arrested are referred to juvenile courts. Juvenile offenses broadly include crimes against persons, crimes against property, drug law violations, and offenses against public order. With respect to juvenile justice policy, three major shifts have occurred since the 1960's. In the early 1960's, Federal policymakers used community organization models to foster local responsibility for juvenile misbehavior. In the late 1960's, several presidential commissions recommended changes to the juvenile justice system, such as the decriminalization of status offenses, the diversion of juvenile offenders from official court processing, and the deinstitutionalization of juvenile offenders. In the mid 1970's, a policy shift occurred that reflected a law and order commitment, prevention, and control. Trends in juvenile offender processing are reviewed that focus on offense patterns, court referrals, and juvenile offender characteristics. The most disturbing trend noted is a dramatic increase in severe dispositions for male, nonwhite drug offenders. Statistics also indicate that waivers of nonwhite juveniles to adult court intake more than doubled during a recent 4-year period. The author recommends action to address the differential processing of minority and nonminority juvenile offenders. 21 references and 8 tables
Main Term(s): Juvenile offenders
Index Term(s): Arrest statistics; Juvenile arrest trends; Juvenile Corrections/Detention; Juvenile Corrections/Detention trends; Juvenile court statistics; Juvenile court trends; Juvenile courts; Juvenile justice policies; Juvenile processing; Juvenile statistics; Minority juvenile offenders; Offender statistics; Offense statistics
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