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Monday 18th of December 2017

Documentation Center

Just Kids: When Misbehaving Is a Crime


Mahsa Jafarian and Vidhya Ananthakrishnan
Vera Institute

Abstract

This special report offers a primer on status offenses—misbehaviors that are only illegal because of a person’s age and that unfairly land many kids in the justice system.

Skipping school, running away from home, violating curfew: these are not actions that most people imagine would land a kid in the juvenile justice system. And yet, every year, thousands of kids across the United States are handcuffed, taken to court, or locked up for just these misbehaviors—often referred to as status offenses—which are only illegal because of a kid’s status as a minor. (Anyone under the age of 18 is subject to status offense charges, but teenagers between the ages of 14 and 17 comprise most status offense cases, so those are the kids referred to in this report.)

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Scope

North America - United States

Year Language

2017 English

Category Type

Grey Literature Report

Keywords

Child, Infancy, Norms, Prevention, Public policies

Format

Web

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