Sunday, May 18, 2008

Statistics Canada Report on Youth Crime

Interesting coincidence: on the same day last week that the Supreme Court of Canada struck down provisions of the Youth Criminal Justice Act that required teenagers convicted of serious crimes to be sentenced as adults unless they could show a youth sentence was warranted, a new Statistics Canada report on youth crime was released:
" crime rates were down and the overall rate of youth crime was 6% lower than a decade earlier and 25% below the peak in 1991, according to a new [report] based on police-reported statistics."

"In 2006, nearly 180,000 young people were implicated in some violation of the Criminal Code, excluding traffic offences. This translates to a youth crime rate of 6,885 youth accused for every 100,000 young people in this age group."

"This study showed that the rate of violent crime among young people increased 12% in 10 years, and 30% since 1991. While property crime rates have declined over the course of the previous decade, these types of offences still accounted for about 4 in 10 youth crimes in 2006."

"Drug-related crimes among youth have also climbed dramatically. The rate of drug offences among youth in 2006 was nearly twice what it was 10 years earlier."
Youth homicide rates have risen 41 per cent since 1997. However, there are so few youth homicides every year that rates can fluctuate substantially.

In the Supreme Court of Canada ruling R. v. D.B. mentioned above, a 5-4 majority ruled that the reverse onus placed on young offenders to prove why they should not be sentenced as an adult runs counter to the principle that young people are less morally blameworthy for criminal conduct because of their lack of maturity.

The onus to prove that a youth should be given an adult sentence after having been found guilty of a serious violent offence should fall on the Crown, the Court ruled.

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posted by Michel-Adrien at 8:26 pm


Anonymous Anonymous said...

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11:39 am  

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