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Offending by Juveniles
Time of Day
Q: When are youth most likely to commit violent crime?
A: Violent crimes by youth (ages 7-17) occur most frequently in the hours immediately following the close of school on school days.
Note: Violent crimes include murder, violent sexual assault, robbery, aggravated assault, simple assault, and kidnapping.
Data are from law enforcement agencies in 45 states and the District of Columbia.

[ Text only ]  [ CSV file ]

  • Violence committed by youth peaks in the afterschool hours on school days and in the evenings on nonschool days.
  • On nonschool days, the incidence of violence committed by youth increases through the afternoon and early evening hours, peaking between 6 p.m. and 9 p.m.
  • The number of school days in a year is essentially equal to the number of nonschool days in a year. Despite this split, most (64%) violent crimes committed by youth occur on school days. Nearly one-fifth (18%) of violent crimes committed by youth occur in the 4 hours between 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. on school days. A smaller proportion of violent crime committed by youth (13%) occurs during the standard juvenile curfew hours of 10 p.m. to 6 a.m. (inclusive of both school and nonschool days).
  • The annual number of hours in the curfew period (i.e., 8 hours every day in the year) is 4 times greater than the number of hours in the 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. period on school days (i.e., 4 hours in half of the days in the year). Therefore, the rate of violence committed by youth in the afterschool period is nearly 6 times the rate during the juvenile curfew period (inclusive of both school and nonschool days).
  • Consequently, efforts to reduce offending by youth after school would appear to have greater potential to decrease a community’s violent crime rate than curfews.

Internet citation: OJJDP Statistical Briefing Book. Online. Available: https://www.ojjdp.gov/ojstatbb/offenders/qa03301.asp?qaDate=2019. Released on April 18, 2022.

Data source: Federal Bureau of Investigation. National Incident-Based Reporting System Master Files for the years 2018 and 2019 [machine-readable data files]. Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Justice, Federal Bureau of Investigation.


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