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Week in Review: July

Let's clap for Friday!! This week there's a fresh new tip and a CLE reminder. Don't forget to add us on Facebook (North Carolina Office of the Juvenile Defender), Twitter (@NCOJD), and LinkedIn (North Carolina Office of the Juvenile Defender). There you can find links to relevant topics, a few looks into the office throughout the week, and other juvenile defense news. And last but not least, a big THANKS to Eric Zogry for our tip!

Tip of the Week - Highlights From the Division of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention 2021 Annual Report

Every year the North Carolina Division of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention releases an annual report documenting agency achievements and describing the youth population served in statistical analysis. I’d like to highlight five sets of information that may help you dispel broad misconceptions of the youth we represent, or focus your practice in particular areas:

  • One message we seem to consistently hear is that more youth are committing crimes every year. The report shows that the delinquency rate is 17.53%, slightly higher than 2018 and 2019 but much lower than ten years ago - 2011 (26.08%).

  • Another common public concern is most of the crimes committed are violent/serious. In fact 87% of all crimes petitioned are misdemeanor and low level (F and below) felonies. Only 6% of crimes are Class A through E.

  • Similarly it is believed that older youth commit more violent crimes. Yet similar to youth overall, about 91% of crimes petitioned are misdemeanor and low level felonies and 9% of crimes are Class A through E.

  • Analysis of youth in detention shows a “mixed bag” of results. There are more youth in detention and their average length of stay in days has doubled (32 days in 2021 and 15 in 2015). This is likely due to all youth under 18 staying now in detention rather than jail, which includes youth transferred and awaiting trial in superior court. But even with the impact of the additional raise the age population, detention admissions in 2021 (2423) were less than half than in 2011 (5170).

  • Racial disparities at intake and in confinement continue to persist in 2021:

o 15,839 complaints filed against Black youth compared to 8,962 White youth.

o 1594 Black youth admitted to detention compared to 461 White youth.

o 119 Black youth committed to YDC compared to 38 White youth.

Part II of our Digital Evidence Series will focus on social media and ethical considerations when using these platforms. The training will consist of Social Media 101, where Assistant Juvenile Defender Burcu Hensley and OJD Communications and Office Manager LaTobia Avent will give an overview of the popular platforms used today. It will also focus on some of the ethical considerations that come up when social media is used. Please join us for this virtual webinar.

To register for this training, please click here. The first 30 people to register AND attend will have their CLE costs paid for by OJD.

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