line Appendix: Reported Juvenile Court Cases Disposed in 1996, by County

Information on the courts’ petitioned and nonpetitioned delinquency, status, and dependency caseloads for the year is presented in the following table. The total population of each reporting jurisdiction, its population age 10 through the upper age of jurisdiction, and its population age 0 through the upper age of jurisdiction are also presented. Case rates (the number of cases per 1,000 juveniles in the population) are presented for each case type for the State (or jurisdiction). Delinquency and status offense case rates are based on the population age 10 through upper age, while rates for dependency cases are based on the population age 0 through upper age.

Table notes follow the table. The notes associated with each data presentation identify the source of the data, the mode of transmission, and the characteristics of data reported.

State and local agencies responsible for the collection of their juvenile court statistics compiled the data found in this table. Agencies transmitted these juvenile court caseload data to the National Juvenile Court Data Archive in one of four different modes. First, many jurisdictions were able to provide the project with an automated data file that contained a detailed description of each case processed by their juvenile courts. Second, some agencies completed a juvenile court statistics (JCS) survey form provided by the project. The survey requested information about each county jurisdiction, asking for the number of delinquency, status offense, and dependency cases disposed and for the number of petition and nonpetition cases. Third, statistics for some jurisdictions were abstracted from their annual reports. In these instances, the report name and the page containing the information are listed. Finally, a few States simply sent statistical pages to the National Center for Juvenile Justice that contained counts of their courts’ handling of juvenile matters.

The units of count for the court statistics vary across jurisdictions. Although many States used cases disposed as the unit of count, other States reported cases filed, children disposed, petitions filed, hearings, juvenile arraignments, and charges. The unit of count is identified in the notes for each data set. The unit of count for each source should be reviewed before any attempt is made to compare statistics either across or within data sets. Variations in administrative practices, differences in upper ages of jurisdiction, and wide ranges in available community resources affect the number of cases handled by individual counties and States. Therefore, the data displayed in this table should not be used to make comparisons among the delinquency, status offense, or dependency workloads of counties or States without carefully studying the definitions of the statistics presented. States that have indicated incomplete reporting of data also are noted.

Furthermore, caution must be taken when interpreting the case rates appearing at the end of each State table. Case rate is defined as the number of juvenile court cases per 1,000 juveniles in the population in the reporting counties. For example, not all California counties reported statistics on nonpetitioned delinquency cases. The California nonpetitioned delinquency case rate was generated from the total number of nonpetitioned delinquency cases from reporting counties.

The figures within a column relate only to the specific case type. However, some jurisdictions were unable to provide statistics that distinguish delinquency and status offense cases from dependency matters or, at times, from other court activities. Such information is presented in this appendix in a column labeled “All Reported Cases.” By its nature, this column contains a heterogeneous mixture of units of count and case types. These variations are identified in the notes associated with each presentation of data. Furthermore, due to the nature of these data, case rates are not calculated for the “All Reported Cases” column.

Finally, although the majority of the data presented in the appendix are for calendar year 1996, several reporting jurisdictions were not able to aggregate data for this timeframe. In those instances, the data cover fiscal year 1996. The period of coverage is indicated in the notes.


Juvenile Court Statistics 1996   July 1999

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