Juvenile Arrests Drop; Fear Of Crime Wave Seems Unwarranted


Arrests of juveniles for violent crimes in the U.S. dropped two percent last year, continuing a recent decline, the U.S. Justice Department reported today. Juvenile arrest numbers rose in 2005 and 2006, “amid fears that the nation was on the brink of another juvenile crime wave,” the department said. The newly analyzed data indicates that does not seem to be true.

The murder arrest rate last year was 3.8 arrests per 100,000 juveniles ages 10 through 17. That was 17 percent more than the 2004 low of 3.3 but 74 percent less than the 1993 peak of 14.4. The report showed the “persistently disproportionate rate of minority contact with the juvenile justice system.” The 2008 arrest rate for robbery was 10 times higher for blacks than whites.

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