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Law Enforcement & Juvenile Crime
Age-specific Arrest Rate Trends
Q: What is the trend for age-specific arrest rates for aggravated assault?
A: Compared with 1980, aggravated assault arrest rates in 2012 were lower for youth ages 15 to 17 but higher for all adult age groups.

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  • The peak year for juvenile aggravated assault arrest rates was 1994. Between 1980 and 1994, arrest rates for youth ages 15-17 increased an average of 122%. The rates also increased substantially for adults in their thirties. More specifically, the rates increased 105% for adults ages 30-34 and 89% for those ages 35-39.
  • Between 1994 and 2012, aggravated assault arrest rates declined for most age groups, but the declines were greater for juveniles than for adults. More specifically, the rates dropped an average of 63% for youth ages 15-17, compared with 43% for adults ages 18-24, 34% for those ages 25-29, and 34% for those ages 30-39.
  • Overall, aggravated assault arrest rates in 2012 for youth ages 15-17 were below (18%) 1980 levels. In comparison, the rates increased for adults age 18 and older, with the largest increases being for those between ages 45 and 59. More specifically, the rates increased 49% for adults ages 45-49, 52% for adults ages 50-54, and 43% for those ages 55-59.

Internet citation: OJJDP Statistical Briefing Book. Online. Available: https://www.ojjdp.gov/ojstatbb/crime/qa05303.asp?qaDate=2012. Released on December 16, 2014.

Data Source: Arrest estimates developed by the Bureau of Justice Statistics and disseminated through “Arrest Data Analysis Tool.” Online. Available from the BJS website. Retrieved October 14, 2014.


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