The Complexities Of Teen Crime

by Stacy Aspen on October 5, 2013

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The justice system in this country is designed to separate juvenile offenders from adult criminals. Young offenders are jailed and tried in a different court system than adults who have broken the law. While most jailed adolescents are released back into the public by the time they turn 21, if not sooner, most parents want to keep their children out of the justice system altogether. When they set out to protect their children from committing crimes, parents are encouraged to remember the impact of their children’s offenses and how these acts can impact their future, as well as that of the entire family.

Disruption Of The Family

Many young people do not have the maturity or the forethought to remember that their actions impact more lives than their own. Parents, however, do have this level of forethought and therefore are encouraged to do everything they can to educate their children about the far-reaching consequences of even the most seemingly harmless acts.

For example, a teen who steals another kid’s cell phone does not just put himself or herself at risk of being thrown out of school and arrested. If that young offender is arrested, they disrupt their family’s life and home. Parents should always try to remind their children that every action can greatly impact their present lives.

Interruption Of Their Education

Young offenders also take for granted how their actions can impact their education. They may not realize that even minor crimes can interrupt their current educational pursuits. Kids need to be reminded that if they commit a crime and are arrested, the justice system will more than likely require that they are withdrawn from their present school and placed in a correctional facility. Their education will continue while they are in jail; however, these young offenders will no longer be around their friends, no longer enjoy extracurricular activities and no longer be able to participate in sports. They sacrifice the best parts of their educational experiences when young people commit crimes.

Guiding Kids Away From Crime

Parents are not helpless when it comes to steering their children away from crime. Even if they work two jobs and have extremely busy lives, parents can lead their children toward a happy future by knowing about every aspect of their children’s lives. They should know who their kids’ friends are, where they spend time when they are not at school, what kind of music and TV they watch, monitor their time on the computer, and be vigilant for signs of criminal activity inside and outside their home.

Parents can also lead by example by refusing to affiliate with others who engage in criminal behaviors and by enforcing the rules in their homes. Having strict boundaries, researching online about teens and criminal behavior at sites such as, and following through on punishments can be a great way for parents to show children that all of their actions have consequences and that the adults in their lives only want the best for them.

Teenage crime can be a complex matter that impacts every aspect of a family’s life. Parents can guide their kids toward a life of happiness and productivity by imparting these lessons early and by remaining vigilant about what goes on inside and outside their homes.


Stacy Aspen

Stacy Aspen

Stacy Aspen has been a legal writer since 2008, assisting lawyers with articles, research papers, web copy and blog posts. Stacy has a BA in creative writing and also enjoys writing poetry in her spare time.

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