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Juvenile DelinquencyJim YangCalifornia State University This article will discuss how juveniles become more delinquent and increase the likelihood of being incarcerated in the future. As teenagers grow up and graduate from school to school, they are  influenced by peer pressure to commit minor crimes and become more defiant . Some children grow up from incarcerated parents with and learn from their parent’s past and commit similar crimes. A juvenile could be tried as an adult when he or she commits a serious offense or where other criteria are satisfied. Accordingly, the belief that there is a special system of justice for juveniles that will apply to them until they attain the age of majority breaks down when a juvenile are dealt with in the adult justice system and sent to an adult prison (Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice).The majority of studies and programs dealing with juvenile delinquency focus on youth as offenders. However, adolescents are also victims of criminal or delinquent acts. Young people who are at risk of becoming delinquent often live in difficult circumstances. Children who for various reasons such as parental alcoholism, drugs, poverty, breakdown of the family, overcrowding, abusive conditions in the home, are orphans or unaccompanied and are without the means of subsistence, housing,and other necessities are at greatest risk of falling into juvenile delinquency. Furthermore, parents who lack efficacy may end up producing delinquent children as they lack a role model to look up to, even including children of parents that are not alcoholics or don’t do drugs or are part of a gang could commit crimes. Juvenile delinquency is the poor and/or inappropriate behavior performed from children and teens or children that are uncontrollably, seriously disobedient to their parents, which may result from criminal activities. There are many causes to the development of juvenile delinquents.  Researchers have found that the family structure can be a forerunner to delinquent behavior, and families do not have control that they once did to control their children.  According to Anne’s study (as cited in Acoca, 1999; Loeber & Stouthamer-Loeber, 1986) found that the major risk factor for juvenile delinquency and adult crime is having a parent who has been engaged in criminal behavior. By one estimate, children whose parents have been extensively involved in the criminal justice system are 3 to 6 times more likely than other children to be delinquent. Also (cited in Eddy & Reid, 2001) these estimates suggest that parental incarceration is related to delinquent behaviors. Families characterized by deviant behavior and attitudes put children at risk of becoming delinquent. The children grow up in an environment where criminal behavior is tolerated, supported, or encouraged. Parental incarceration can affect many aspects of a child’s life, including emotional and behavioral well-being, family stability and financial circumstances.  As Parke and Clarke (2001) noted,”some argue that children ought to be protected from the knowledge that their parents are incarcerated as a way of minimizing the trauma associated with the separation (Becker & Margolin, 1967). Others argue that the emotional distress of children is exacerbated by the unwillingness of family, friends or caregivers to discuss their parent’s incarceration (Snyder-Joy & Carlo, 1998).”Dannerbeck (2005) found the following:A major reason children are removed from the home is because of abuse or neglect by the caregiver. Parents who are antisocial and spend time in jail or prison for their own criminal behavior are more likely to use harsh or ineffective parenting practices that could extend into abuse or neglect of their children (cited in Capaldi & Patterson, 1991; Patterson & Yoerger, 1999). Children who are maltreated are significantly more likely to exhibit delinquent behavior…. they are more likely to continue to engage in maladaptive behaviors (Smith & Thornberry, 1995; Wiebush, Freitag, & Baird, 2001). Just 22% of the youth reporting effective parent management had ever been placed out of the home. Among those who had experienced ineffective parent management, 63% had experienced an out-of-home placement.According by the Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Statistics, 1.7 million minor children had a parent in prison, an 82% increase since 1991. A way to prevent the child from any depression is to not see the tragic environment his or her parent is in or to see other people that have committed a crime. It is not a good influence for children which that could have an impact on their future.  In many studies, “incarcerated parents said they did not want their children to visit them because they wanted their families and children to move on with their lives, they were ashamed to have their children see them in prison, or they wanted to keep their children away from other convicts who were perceived as a negative or harmful influence” (Tripp, 2001). Children make more friends as they grow older and attend school. This is a risk factor for child delinquency to expand. People often change their perception, opinions, and behavior to be consistent with standards or expectations of a group membership such as family, religious, school or peers. Peer group affiliation becomes particularly important and influential at a young age. They share common attitudes and behaviors, but influence is substantial when it comes to an agreement. Flores (2003) stated, “Many studies show a relation between deviant peer associations and juvenile offending (Elliott and Menard, 1996). Most hypotheses suggest that deviant peers can lead some youth with no previous history of delinquent behavior to initiate delinquent acts and may influence already delinquent youth to increase their delinquency. Youth who associate with deviant peers are likely to be arrested earlier than youth who do not associate with such peers (Cole et al., 1995). In addition, studies emphasize that a delinquent sibling can greatly encourage a child to become delinquent, especially when the siblings are close in age and have a close relationship (Reiss and Farrington, 1991; Rowe & Gulley, 1992). ” Juveniles are more than likely to be incarcerated if these factors do not change. “One estimate suggests that between 50 and 75 percent of adolescents who have spent time in juvenile detention centers are incarcerated later in life…. And are committed to adult facilities. Such settings can be harmful to adolescents. Juveniles may face higher risks of rape, assault, and suicide when placed in adult prisons, although reliable statistics are lacking. Multiple studies show. However, that those who are transferred to adult facilities are more likely to reoffend” (Child Trends DataBank, 2015). These juveniles are not aware of what they are going to face behind the adult’s prison bars. “Most juveniles in residential placement (95 percent in 2013) are there because of delinquency. The other five percent have committed status offenses (behaviors that are illegal for underage persons but not for adults, such as running away, incorrigibility i.e., “beyond the control of parents, guardians, or custodians”, and truancy) as their most serious offense (Casey, 2013). As they enter the prison bars, “they are 36 times more likely to commit suicide in an adult jail than in a juvenile detention facility,” according to Campaign for Youth Justice. They are more likely to join gangs and get involved in drug activities so they can be safe. As soon as teenagers are tried as adults, they are less likely to start families, get a job, and have opportunities after getting released. Adult prison is not a place for juveniles to grow maturely and serve punishment knowing all the negative outcomes of incarceration. ReferencesAcoca, L. (1999). Investing in girls: 21st century strategy. Juvenile Justice, 6(1). www.ncjrs.org/html/ojjdp/jjjournal1099/contents.htmlEddy, J. M., & Reid, J. (2001). The antisocial behavior of the adolescent children of incarcerated parents: A developmental perspective (Working paper). Washington, DC: Urban Institute and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.Dannerbeck, A. M. (2005). Differences in Parenting Attributes, Experiences, and Behaviors of Delinquent Youth with and without a Parental History of Incarceration. Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice, 3(3), 199-213. doi:10.1177/1541204005276260United Nations, “Report of the Tenth United Nations Congress on the Prevention of Crime and the Treatment of Offenders, Vienna, 10-17 April 2000” (A/CONF.187.15).Tripp, B. (2001). Incarcerated African American fathers: Exploring changes in family relationships and the father identity. Journal of African American Men, 6 (1), 13-18.Parke, R. and Clarke, A. (2017). Effects of Parental Incarceration on Young Children. online ASPE. Available at: https://aspe.hhs.gov/basic-report/effects-parental-incarceration-young-children Accessed 2 Dec. 2017.Loeber, R., Farrington, D. P., & Petechuk, D. (2003). Child Delinquency: Early Intervention and Prevention. CHILD DELINQUENCY. Retrieved from https://www.ncjrs.gov/pdffiles1/ojjdp/186162.pdf.Child Trends DataBank. (2015). Juvenile detention. https://www.childtrends.org/indicators/juvenile-detention/.Youth Incarceration in the United States. (2013, February 26). Retrieved December 06, 2017, from http://www.aecf.org/resources/youth-incarceration-in-the-united-states/.Baron, D. (2015-2017). Campaign for Youth Justice. Retrieved December 06, 2017, from http://www.campaignforyouthjustice.org/


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