More than anything else, property crime defines traditional concepts of “the teenager.” Vandalism, shoplifting, burglary, joyriding, arson, petty theft … all senseless things “dumb kids” do that jeopardize their futures and immiserate everyone’s lives.The teenage shed-torcher, windshield smasher, petty klepto, spray-painter and thrill-seeker whose anti-social destruction defies decency and reason infuriates adults to our core. It is no wonder crime scholars immersed in that era disparage “teenage brains.”
In 1978, the first year California released comprehensive crime numbers by age, more than 130,000 youths were arrested for felony and misdemeanor property offenses. Back then, youths under age 18 accounted for a shocking 43% of all property offense arrests.
Now, that whole species of “teenagers” as we knew it seems to have vanished. Property crime arrests of Californians under age 18, 1978-2018
In 2018, California’s teenaged youth population ages 10-17 was 1.1 million larger than 40 years earlier, Yet, fewer than 10,000 youths were arrested for all felony and misdemeanor property offenses — a 95% decline in the rate of juvenile property arrests.
NEW YORK — Cornelius Fredericks, 16, was sitting at a table eating lunch when he was tackled by a staff member at Lakeside Academy in Kalamazoo, Michigan. Soon after he hit the ground, two other staff members ran over to assist. They started restraining Fredericks for throwing food.
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — It was drizzling steadily on June 6 when one of the largest civil rights protests in Jacksonville history began amassing in front of the courthouse. The rain stopped by the time protesters took to the streets, flanked by peacekeepers and organizers with bullhorns leading chants of “Hey hey, ho ho, racist cops have got to go,” “No justice, no peace” and the like.
CORTLAND, N.Y. — Few people downtown would look Steve Williams in the eye. Not the police officers stationed at each end of Courthouse Park. Not the two white families at his front and back, who called past him to greet each other.
Williams had come there not in support of the protest but as a critic, centered around one central question: How long would it take a stranger holding a Black Lives Matter sign to acknowledge Williams, a Black man? “It’s lacking that passion. Y’all know that passion when you really mean something?
Activists in New York are challenging NYPD Police Commissioner Dermot Shea’s account of a May 30 incident where police in Brooklyn rammed two patrol cruisers into a crowd of protestors and metal barricades, sending demonstrators flying.
The Office of Neighborhood Safety (ONS) in Richmond, Calif., is a non-law enforcement governmental agency whose sole purpose is to reduce gun violence using street outreach as a primary vehicle to deliver optimal and sustained gun violence reduction outcomes.
In America we are young, tired and traumatized. We are tired of validating our space, our existence and the reason why we should have a seat at the table. Youth are continuously ignored, dismissed and unheard. Stereotyping youth as “too young” or “not experienced enough” has been a consistent strategy to devalue the movements that we create. Youth are dying.
After weeks of emotionally charged youth-led protests calling for sweeping reforms to root racism out of the criminal justice system in the streets, the New York City Council passed a package of bills today targeting the New York Police Department for major changes.
It is a question that has been posed to every level of law enforcement in Louisiana. From the city of Westwego, where the 14-year-old boy was shot in the back, to the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office whose deputies initiated the chase that led to his shooting, to the Louisiana State Police who are responsible for investigating police shootings.
Why are we so shocked in this country after witnessing a black man being killed? Is it because of the way he was killed? I feel that this time people seem to be more aware of the problems that run deep into the soul of this country, and of how black and brown people are treated on a daily basis because of the color of their skin.
It is hard to imagine that three weeks ago the chief concern among youth advocates, as well as juvenile justice agencies across the country, continued to be how to keep young people in locked facilities safe from the spread of COVID-19.
NEW YORK — After weeks of protest across New York, state and local elected officials are still scrambling to develop plans to divert funding from police departments, and deciding to reallocate the funds toward youth-based social services.
On Friday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed an executive order stating funding will be withheld if any local police department — including the New York Police Department — does not implement plans that reinvent and modernize police strategies and programs based on community input, the statement said. In a joint statement released late Friday afternoon, New York City Council leaders, including the co-chairs of the Black, Latino, and Asian Caucus and Speaker Corey Johnson, announced their intentions to “cut over $1 billion dollars, including reducing uniform headcount through attrition, cutting overtime, shifting responsibilities away from the NYPD, finding efficiencies and savings in OTPS [Other Than Personal Service, or nonsalary] spending, and lowering associated fringe expenses.”
Johnson had indicated his willingness to support reforms earlier in the week, and expressed frustration that initial budget cuts forced by coronavirus were not sufficient. “As we have said, a less than one percent cut to the NYPD and a 32% cut to Department of Youth and Community Development is not representative of our values and the City Council will not approve a budget that fails to significantly reduce the NYPD budget and start us on a path to bringing structural change and transformational reforms to the police department,” a statement from Johnson’s office said Wednesday. Reallocating the funding is expected to produce a raucous debate among city officials, no matter how much money is taken from the department, with no clear sense of where the money should go. In a statement, the president of the Police Benevolent Association (PBA) predicted that if the city moved forward with its plan to cut funding, crime could increase as a result.
“For decades, every time a city agency failed at its task, the city’s answer was to take the job away and give it to the NYPD.
SYRACUSE, N.Y. — Pressure is mounting on city lawmakers to change how the Syracuse Police Department operates: The state passed two sets of state-mandated police reforms this week that Syracuse will implement. A still-unresolved contract between the city and the Syracuse Police Benevolent Association will likely head to arbitration. Protest organizers have vowed to march across the city for 40 days, part of the nationwide Black Lives Matter protests sparked by the killing of George Floyd.
On Friday afternoon, day 14 of the protests, another group mounted its pressure. Organizing under the name Cuse Youth Black Lives Matter (CuseYouthBLM), a set of 10 organizers from a local high school had pushed three specific demands from city hall. One would give the Citizens Review Board power by reforming its structure; another would increase transparency in SPD’s new officer hiring process.