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Juveniles in Court
Juvenile Court Cases
Q: How many delinquency cases are handled by juvenile courts?
A: In 2012 courts with juvenile jurisdiction disposed more than 1.1 million delinquency cases.

Estimated number of delinquency cases, 2012

Most serious offense
Number
of cases
Percent change
1985-2012 2003-2012 2008-2012 2011-2012
Total Delinquency
1,145,800
-1%
-32%
-30%
-8%
Person Offenses
294,500
60
-29
-28
-7
Violent Crime Index*
58,000
-3
-24
-34
-8
Criminal homicide
900
-27
-34
-39
-1
Forcible rape
7,500
96
-17
-9
2
Robbery
21,200
-16
-2
-33
-8
Aggravated assault
28,400
-5
-36
-38
-11
Simple assault
204,400
94
-30
-26
-7
Other violent sex offenses
9,400
18
-14
-15
2
Other person offenses
22,700
108
-30
-35
-8
Property Offenses
409,800
-42
-37
-32
-9
Property Crime Index**
295,200
-43
-35
-27
-7
Burglary
73,900
-48
-33
-29
-7
Larceny-theft
204,100
-38
-32
-23
-8
Motor vehicle theft
11,600
-70
-69
-56
-9
Arson
5,600
-15
-33
-29
-2
Vandalism
62,400
-27
-39
-43
-11
Trespassing
33,700
-36
-36
-40
-14
Stolen property offenses
11,000
-60
-48
-41
-9
Other property offenses
7,400
-59
-60
-49
-11
Drug Law Violations
147,800
91
-19
-19
-4
Public Order Offenses
293,800
51
-31
-32
-8
Obstruction of justice
139,600
109
-31
-27
-7
Disorderly conduct
82,200
83
-31
-37
-10
Weapons offenses
23,500
17
-32
-42
-12
Liquor law violations
11,700
-34
-26
-41
-16
Nonviolent sex offenses
11,500
-9
-23
-6
0
Other public order offenses
25,300
-21
-36
-39
-4
* Includes criminal homicide, forcible rape, robbery, and aggravated assault.
** Includes burglary, larceny-theft, motor vehicle theft, and arson.

Note: Detail may not add to totals because of rounding. Percent-change calculations are based on unrounded numbers.

[ Excel file ]

  • Delinquency offenses are acts committed by juveniles that would be crimes if committed by adults.
  • The juvenile court delinquency caseload peaked in 1997, then steadily decreased through 2012. By 2012, the delinquency caseload rested at a level lower than in 1985.

Internet citation: OJJDP Statistical Briefing Book. Online. Available: http://www.ojjdp.gov/ojstatbb/court/qa06201.asp?qaDate=2012. Released on February 20, 2015.

Adapted from Easy Access to Juvenile Court Statistics. Available on-line at: http://ojjdp.gov/ojstatbb/ezajcs/.

Data Source: National Juvenile Court Data Archive. National Center for Juvenile Justice. Pittsburgh, PA.

 

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