A new Missouri report on juvenile offender rehabilitation points to some promising data and seeks to create the state’s first clear definition of juvenile recidivism, says the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. The report compares how that rate differs for particular types of young offenders.
The rate for juveniles for all offenses in Missouri in 2007 was 26 percent; about a quarter of the 15,900 youths who got in trouble with the law that year went on to commit another offense. The key findings are in the circumstances in which youths return to crime. About 41 percent of the 4,100 juveniles who reoffended did so within three months of the disposition of their previous offense. Thirteen- to 15-year-olds were far more likely to reoffend than younger or older juveniles. Teens with less serious offenses were less likely to reoffend if they had limited involvement with the juvenile court system. Those factors paint a clearer picture of the types of rehabilitative programs that might effectively put juvenile offenders on the right track, said Gary Waint, deputy state courts administrator.