Juvenile Delinquency Factors Pertaining to Criminal Behavior
This was pounded home in this statement made by Congressman Bobby Scott who said, “Giving a 10-year mandatory minimum for a second offense fist fight is not going to reduce the chance that someone will be stabbed 16 times when you are not funding any of the programs that are desperately needed to actually reduce juvenile crime”. Juveniles are the future so it is important that we look at cause of criminal behavior within this age group.
In order to provide them with outlets that influence their outlook on life and futures and this can only be done if we know what it is that has influenced their life thus far and how we can implement things into their environment that will change their outlook. The first place to look is the family because these are usually the people that the closest and usually the most influential on young people. According to David P. Farrington a Professor of Criminology research has shown that 53 percent of 1,000 adults when asked what they perceived to be the main cause of violence, they agreed it was lack of discipline.
And according to Professor Farrington academic research performed in 1997 confirmed the earlier finding. Discipline in the school system was also a factor according to about 15 % of those same adults. The other factors for juvenile delinquency in this research were poverty, violence on television, broken homes as well as drugs and alcohol. This research had to then divide the family influences into six different categories. The first says that delinquent and antisocial children are usually influenced by parents and siblings that are antisocial and or criminal.
The greatest influence among 400 males that research was performed on found that males between eight years old and 48 was the convicted father and 63% of those with convicted fathers ended up being convicted as well. In a akin research on families with multiple children it was seen that the older children were convicted more often than younger siblings and only 6% percent of these families ended up with all the children being convicted. What we see here is that home is often times the start of delinquency because problems at home can affect other areas in a child’s life.
At times though other areas of the child’s life can affect his or her behavior and may not have anything to do with home life although family may see some differences in the child but not know what has caused the behavior or ignore it thinking this maybe something that the child would out grow. That behavior though at times can a child’s way of crying out for help or attention. Some other things that may trigger delinquency are failure or poor academic levels in school. This can cause frustration and lack of attendance, outburst that can lead to a child being expelled from school.
Poor social skills leaving a child feeling unwanted or unable to blend in with his or her peers may cause the child to withdraw and not be able to ask for help or act just the opposite and act out drawing attention to their self or have violent outburst which increases the likely hood that the child will drop out of school or be expelled. Substance abuse is high risk factor for these children in a few different ways. The main thing is that drugs and alcohol tend to cause a temporary relief of the mental or even physical anguish that the child sees their self going through.
This usually puts the child in contact with someone that encourages the behavior for the sake of profit but uses guile to fabricate a relationship causing the child to think that he or she is important. This person then enables the addiction to the substances and often times contribute to the illegal behaviors by encouraging the child to sell drugs for him or her. This is done by different means of trickery such as telling them they need a favor done or the main one is tempting the child with the prospect of earning money to help them or their family.
This is a great attraction to the child that comes from a broken home and living in poverty for they see it as way of helping to support the family. This type of behavior is also seen in areas that are prone to gangs. They entice the younger child in because they are easier to manipulate. They make the child feel that they are a part of a bigger family and tell them they understand better than their own parents at times. The gang encourages criminal activity to help finance the gang and use violence to protect the gang.
This means that the younger the child the easier it is to mold them into their way of thinking. These many times end up with the child being put in danger that may lead to injury and regrettably at times even death. Today we have some programs that help with child delinquency but at times or in some areas there are not enough resources or programs out there to provide better alternatives. This may be the lack of finances and other reasons may include fear caused by gang activity, threats and or violence.