Essay Crime Rates Among Adolescents And Adolescents

933 Words Apr 29th, 2015 4 Pages
We often read or hear about the awful crimes committed by children and adolescents all over the Internet, on Television, and even in newspaper articles. This had led many people to wonder if adolescents are as bad as the media perceives them to be. Delinquent behaviors among juveniles are present in all societies and have been steadily decreasing for the past decade. Due to the media overload concerning delinquency, people tend to assume that crime rates among adolescents are the highest they have ever been. However, research indicates that all crime rates among adolescents are much lower than they were in the past. Serious acts of delinquency such as murder had a sharp decline in the mid 2000s, after rates were doubled between the late 80s and early 90s (Puzzanchera, 2013). Though these rates have decreased, crimes such as burglary, trespassing, vandalism, larceny-theft, and stolen property offenses had over 440,000 reported cases in 2011 (Hockenberry & Puzzanchera, 2014).
The types and amount of crimes committed by adolescents and children has led researchers to examine reasons why juveniles engage in delinquency. Several sociologists have proposed theories on the topic. One of the most accepted theories is known as Strain theory. This was first proposed by Emile Durkheim and later continued by Robert Merton. Merton’s strain theory centers around the view that when juveniles experience strain or stress, they become upset, and as a result of this strain they sometimes…

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