conception may be the impression that juvenile crime is an epidemic


Part of that conception may be the impression that juvenile crime is an epidemic. Whether characters from a Charles Dickens novel or perceived gang members in a modern city, juvenile delinquents may give the impression of a society out of control.

But is it really? Furthermore, how does one translate the evolving definition of juvenile into application in criminal justice practice? And how does the role of formal education, particularly secondary education, help manage an increasingly urban and suburban juvenile population by contributing to, controlling, or suppressing juvenile delinquency?

evaluate perspectives on juvenile crime rates and how to approach juvenile delinquency—and how approaches may differ between adults and youth.

· Analyze perceptions and realities of juvenile violence

· Analyze the evolving distinction of juvenile in the criminal justice system

· Compare treatment of juveniles and adults in the criminal justice system

· Recommend a criminal justice approach for a juvenile offender

· Demonstrate understanding of juvenile delinquency concepts and terms

If an adolescent, dressed in a school uniform but sullen in attitude, sits next to you on the subway, would you worry about your safety? The community you live or work in may have an unspoken wariness about juveniles, perhaps manifesting in the avoidance of areas where adolescents congregate or through local businesses limiting how many students are allowed in a store. What feeds that wariness?

Given that many interactions between juveniles and law enforcement may not result in an arrest, due in part to the distinction between juvenile and adult, it is difficult to establish accurate conclusions about trends in delinquency.

In this Discussion, you compare the difference between perception and reality with regard to juvenile crime as well as compare that reality with other societies.

· Why does juvenile violence still seem to persist or be more extreme despite general downward trends?

· Is the United States unique in this respect?

Agnew, R., & Brezina, T. (2017). Juvenile delinquency: Causes and control (6th ed.). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.


© Laureate Education, Inc. Page 1 of 3

Criminal Justice Case Studies: Juvenile Delinquency and Justice

Week 2

A high school freshman creates a fake social media account for the purpose of tricking
another student. The fake account is used to show romantic interest in the targeted
teen, and many deceptive techniques are used to make the targeted teen think that the
fake account actually belongs to a real person. The holder of the fake account
eventually reveals the trick, posting screenshots on a popular social media platform of
embarrassing texts and admissions by the targeted teen. A few days later, the targeted
teen waits for the cyberbully outside of school and physically attacks the cyberbully,
sending the cyberbully to the hospital. The parents of the cyberbully want to press
charges against the targeted teen.

Week 3

Before the beginning of a school day, law enforcement arrest a 15-year-old student who
attends the local high school. Students, teachers, and even family members describe
the student as a “loner.” Some students do not even recognize the student, while others
are unaware of his name or refer to him in derogatory terms. The student does have a
small group of fellow students with whom he socializes sometimes during lunch, but it’s
unclear whether these are friendships outside of school. Teachers describe the student
as a good student but quiet. One of the student’s lunchtime acquaintances refers
investigators to a website where the student posts frequently under a screen name,
sharing tips for hacking and also anti-government views.

The student is arrested for hacking into multiple government websites, including the
Department of Defense and other highly secure areas.

Continued next page.

Criminal Justice Case Studies: Juvenile Delinquency and Justice

© Laureate Education, Inc. Page 2 of 3

Week 4

A 15-year-old holds up a corner convenience store using a gun. Although the offender
threatened the clerk with the gun, no one was injured. The 15-year-old has no prior
record. The offender did run from police when he spotted them coming up the walk to
his house, but once apprehended, he did not resist arrest in any other way.

The father of the offender is currently serving a prison sentence for assault, and he has
a prior arrest for drug possession. The son reports that he recalls his father being
intoxicated, often not home, and belligerent when present.

The offender’s mother works two jobs, and therefore the offender is without supervision
for long periods. The mother does not have any criminal record. Upon contact, she was
concerned about her son. However, she said that she could not come to an intake
meeting conference at the requested time for fear of being fired from her job. The
offender’s grandmother lived in the same apartment with the offender and his mother,
providing supervision, but she died one year ago.

Since the grandmother’s death, the offender has been suspended from school for a
minor altercation and is frequently truant. Prior to the grandmother’s death, the offender
had good attendance.

The offender does admit to the crime but will not provide information about how the gun
was acquired; however, it likely was acquired from another youth in the neighborhood.

Continued next page.

Criminal Justice Case Studies: Juvenile Delinquency and Justice

© Laureate Education, Inc. Page 3 of 3

Week 5

Adam, a 16-year-old student at the local high school, has had multiple run-ins with law
enforcement, beginning with a shoplifting arrest. The store in that first arrest dropped
the charges, and Adam made restitution for what he had stolen. Within the next year, it
became apparent that Adam had a drug problem, as a teacher reported finding drug
paraphernalia on his person and his mother revealed finding drugs around the house.
Adam was then picked up for possession of a controlled substance. Adam attended
outpatient treatment in lieu of being charged, where he revealed that he had been
selling small amounts of drugs to some classmates. He also revealed that his abusive
father had left some time ago and that his mother also suffered from drug addiction,
often leaving drugs out in the open.

After a fight outside a high school football game led to his injuring another student,
Adam was sent to various intervention programs to address his drug use and
sometimes violent behavior. He rebounded for a time, attending school more regularly
and, according to those around him, staying clean. However, in recent months, Adam
has fallen in with a crowd of 18- and 19-year-olds who are part of a regional crystal
meth operation.

Adam arrives before you after having shot and critically wounded a rival drug dealer.

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