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There is a lot of focus on youth crime now, but statistics from the US Department of Justice show that it is possible to reduce crime significantly.
The latest analysis concerns figures from 2020, when 424,300 people under the age of 18 were arrested. This is a reduction of a whopping 78 percent from 1994, when youth violent crime was at its highest peak.
Youth crime has also decreased more than violent crime in general. Between 2010-2020, the number of young people arrested for violent crimes decreased by 56 percent. The same figure for adults only fell by six percent during the period. In total, young people accounted for seven percent of all violent crimes in 2020.
One reason crime dropped so much in 2020 may be that the pandemic made young people stay home more. But there is also a trend from before that young people commit fewer violent crimes.
"These data give us reason to be optimistic about the reform of the juvenile justice system, especially as efforts in many jurisdictions to replace harsh sentences with opportunities for personal development and programs that help young people take responsibility for their actions", said Liz Ryan, director of the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, in a press release.