Nowadays the news of burglary, rape, vandalism, and homicide are increasing but what is more threatening is the fact that the average age of the criminals involved are decreasing day by day. Report suggests an increase in the crimes by youth, and this has reached an alarming level. About 350+ juveniles have been incarcerated for heinous, and around 1,100+ for non-heinous crimes, in the last six months, and these are stats of Delhi only. Data shows that 950+ FIRs have been registered against juveniles last year, and the numbers are only increasing as we count. It’s necessary to understand that no child is born criminal. There are factors that contribute to juvenile crime, leading them to such conducts and hence unfortunate fates.
The causes that drive youth towards crimes are complex. There are some genetic, social, political, and environmental factors that influence young minds towards criminal behavior and tendencies. Although biological factors are one of the primary causes for the "law-breaking” attitude among teens and tweens, culture also plays a key role in shaping and elevating criminal mindset in them, studies says that the biological, or heretical, factors do contribute to criminal behavior, but culture and social system play a greater role towards it. The sociocultural factors contributing to juvenile crimes include neglected education, poor socioeconomic conditions, peer pressure, negligence on the part of parents and substance abuse. Neglectful attitude towards education is the most common cause of young people to turn towards criminal activities, as there is no proper skill development resulting in unemployment and association to crimes. Lack of quality education leads youth to get involved in baleful activities. Poor socioeconomic status becomes an important contributing factor to juvenile crime, due to the urge of making easy money, in result of engaging in burglary. As children reach adolescence, they go through plenty of changes. They want to become independent and develop their rules and paths. Trying to gain popularity and acceptance by the peers and social groups is common trait among teens. And in order to fit in they fall prey to peer pressure. Peer pressure can have both positive, or negative influences over the child. Study proves that peer pressure is a major reasons for engaging in criminal behaviors such as theft, driving under influence, drug abuse, sex crimes, gang involvement. Negligence on the part of parents tends to ill-affect a child on various levels. They become careless towards academics, chores, routine, responsibilities, and overall physical development and appearance. When parents don't pay heed to the personal and social development of their children, they develop a pseudo sense of independence and usually end up making bad decisions for themselves. Substance abuse is extremely dangerous. It may develop from the influence of the peers. The excess use of drugs or alcohol can affect the cognitive development of an individual, lowering inhibitions and ability to evaluate. Drugs and alcohol are common and powerful contributors to crime rates, especially in younger mass.
Crimes and misbehavior young offenders usually (worldwide) get arrested for are as follows: VIOLENT CRIMES Assault, homicide, rape, robbery-theft, arson (pyromania), burglary, vandalism, weapon possession. DRUG AND ALCOHOL VIOLATIONS Driving under the influence, drug abuse, drug possession, underage alcohol consumption. SEXUAL OFFENSES Prostitution, trafficking vice, and Rape. STATUS OFFENSES Curfew violations, riots, incorrigibility (refusal to obey), runaway. STAND POINT Youth is the future of our human race. But the hike in number of young offenders is heart-wrenching, it is forming a deadlock for the future, and it is very disturbing as the severeness of crime is increasing and the age of offenders is decreasing with each up-coming case. Excessive gore content on the internet and OTT and violence inducing video games leaves malign impression on the young minds. Also, pornographic content and lack of sensibility towards proper sex education leads them to indulge in crimes of violence and rape. Intervention is essential at an early stage of any kind of mischief or misconduct is necessary in order to prevent crime involving young offenders, the root causes must be understood and resolved to put an end to it.