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Psychosocial Maturity and Desistance From Crime in a Sample of Serious Juvenile Offenders

June 23, 2015 Comments off

Psychosocial Maturity and Desistance From Crime in a Sample of Serious Juvenile Offenders (PDF)
Source: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention

Highlights

The Pathways to Desistance study followed more than 1,300 serious juvenile offenders for 7 years after their conviction. In this bulletin, the authors present key findings on the link between psychosocial maturity and desistance from crime in the males in the Pathways sample as they transition from midadolescence to early adulthood (ages 14–25):

• Recent research indicates that youth experience protracted maturation, into their midtwenties, of brain systems responsible for self-regulation. This has stimulated interest in measuring young offenders’ psychosocial maturity into early adulthood.
• Youth whose antisocial behavior persisted into early adulthood were found to have lower levels of psychosocial maturity in adolescence and deficits in their development of maturity (i.e., arrested development) compared with other antisocial youth.
• The vast majority of juvenile offenders, even those who commit serious crimes, grow out of antisocial activity as they transition to adulthood. Most juvenile offending is, in fact, limited to adolescence.
• This study suggests that the process of maturing out of crime is linked to the process of maturing more generally, including the development of impulse control and future orientation.

Sticker Shock: Calculating the Full Price Tag for Youth Incarceration

May 13, 2015 Comments off

Sticker Shock: Calculating the Full Price Tag for Youth Incarceration
Source: Justice Policy Institute

Thirty-three U.S. states and jurisdictions spend $100,000 or more annually to incarcerate a young person, and continue to generate outcomes that result in even greater costs. Our new report, Sticker Shock: Calculating the Full Price Tag for Youth Incarceration, provides estimates of the overall costs resulting from the negative outcomes associated with incarceration. The report finds that these long-term consequences of incarcerating young people could cost taxpayers $8 billion to $21 billion each year.

Psychosocial Maturity and Desistance From Crime in a Sample of Serious Juvenile Offenders

May 12, 2015 Comments off

Psychosocial Maturity and Desistance From Crime in a Sample of Serious Juvenile Offenders (PDF)
Source: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (DoJ)

Highlights

The Pathways to Desistance study followed more than 1,300 serious juvenile offenders for 7 years after their conviction. In this bulletin, the authors present key findings on the link between psychosocial maturity and desistance from crime in the males in the Pathways sample as they transition from midadolescence to early adulthood (ages 14–25):

• Recent research indicates that youth experience protracted maturation, into their midtwenties, of brain systems responsible for self-regulation. This has stimulated interest in measuring young offenders’ psychosocial maturity into early adulthood.
• Youth whose antisocial behavior persisted into early adulthood were found to have lower levels of psychosocial maturity in adolescence and deficits in their development of maturity (i.e., arrested development) compared with other antisocial youth.
• The vast majority of juvenile offenders, even those who commit serious crimes, grow out of antisocial activity as they transition to adulthood. Most juvenile offending is, in fact, limited to adolescence.
• This study suggests that the process of maturing out of crime is linked to the process of maturing more generally, including the development of impulse control and future orientation.

New Report Finds Incarceration for ‘Status Offenses’ Still Widespread

April 28, 2015 Comments off

New Report Finds Incarceration for ‘Status Offenses’ Still Widespread
Source: Coalition for Juvenile Justice (CJJ)

More than half of U.S. states allow children to be detained for repeated nonviolent “status offenses” such as skipping school, running away from home or possession of alcohol, a new report says.

The revelation comes more than 40 years after the landmark Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (JJDPA) stipulated that in states receiving federal juvenile justice grants, no child should be locked up for such minor transgressions. They’re called status offenses because they are considered crimes owing only to a youth’s status as a juvenile.

The provision of the 1974 JJDPA calling for “deinstitutionalization” of status offenders had led to a marked decline in detention of these youths.

But the JJDPA, the main federal juvenile justice law, was amended in 1980 to include an exception allowing judges to confine a youth adjudicated guilty for a status offense if the child had violated a “valid court order” not to repeat the offense.

The report, Status Offenses: A National Survey, by the Washington-based Coalition for Juvenile Justice (CJJ), showed most of the cases of children being detained for status offenses occurred in just a handful of states. But judges can still detain repeat status offenders under the exception in 26 states and Washington, D.C.

Reducing Harms to Boys and Young Men of Color from Criminal Justice System Involvement

April 20, 2015 Comments off

Reducing Harms to Boys and Young Men of Color from Criminal Justice System Involvement
Source: Urban Institute

Boys and young men of color are overrepresented in all aspects of the juvenile justice and criminal justice systems, at considerable cost to those involved, their families, and their communities. This overrepresentation is most acute for African Americans, although other communities of color are also affected. This paper reviews systemic, institutional, and community policies and practices that greatly impact the life chances of boys and young men of color. Policy and practice changes that would reduce criminal justice engagement and that would reduce the harms caused to communities of color from criminal justice engagement are identified and suggestions are made for developing more evidence of effectiveness for initiatives in this area.

Prosecution, Transfer, and Registration of Serious Juvenile Sex Offenders

April 7, 2015 Comments off

Prosecution, Transfer, and Registration of Serious Juvenile Sex Offenders (PDF)
Source: Office of Justice Programs

States vary widely between their applicable ages of criminal responsibility, circumstances in which a juvenile will automatically be prosecuted in adult criminal court (legislative waiver), and when the decision to try a juvenile in adult court is vested either in the prosecuting attorney (prosecutorial waiver) or a judge (judicial waiver). Any survey of sex offender registration and notification requirements applicable to juveniles is incomplete without a more thorough analysis of the systems of charging, adjudication, disposition, transfer, and/or sentencing which might apply to a serious juvenile sex offender.

This overview paints a broad picture of the state of the law in the United States regarding these issues, and then takes a look at the relevant provisions regarding sex offender registration and notification for juveniles adjudicated delinquent in juvenile court of serious sex offenses.

States that limit or prohibit juvenile shackling and solitary confinement

March 31, 2015 Comments off

States that limit or prohibit juvenile shackling and solitary confinement
Source: National Conference of State Legislatures

State legislatures and courts across the country also are reexamining the practice of placing juveniles in solitary confinement and shackling youth during court appearances without first assessing each juvenile’s individual behavior.

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