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Law Enforcement & Juvenile Crime
Juvenile Arrest Rate Trends
Following 5 years of decline, the juvenile Violent Crime Index arrest rate reached a new historic low-point in 2012.

Juvenile Arrest Rates for Violent Crime Index Offenses, 1980-2012

Juvenile Arrest Rates for Violent Crime Index Offenses

Note: Rates are arrests of persons ages 10-17 per 100,000 persons ages 10-17 in the resident population. The Violent Crime Index includes the offenses of murder and nonnegligent manslaughter, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault.

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  • The juvenile Violent Crime Index arrest rate increased in the mid-2000s, and then declined through 2012 to its lowest level since at least 1980. The rate in 2012 was 38% below its 1980 level and 63% below the peak year of 1994.
  • In 2012, there were 182 arrests for Violent Crime Index offenses for every 100,000 youth between 10 and 17 years of age.
  • If each of these arrests involved a different juvenile (which is unlikely), then no more than 1 in every 544 persons ages 10-17 was arrested for a Violent Crime Index offense in 2012, or less than one-fifth of 1% of all juveniles ages 10 to 17 living in the U.S.

Internet Citation: OJJDP Statistical Briefing Book. Online. Available:
http://www.ojjdp.gov/ojstatbb/crime/JAR_Display.asp?ID=qa05201. December 09, 2014.

Adapted from Puzzanchera, C. (2013). Juvenile Arrests 2011. Washington, D.C.: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.


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