The particular case study is about Juvenile delinquency which is also known as juvenile offending or simply youth crime (Siegel, 2011). Most Legal systems have defined the specific procedures for dealing with the cases of juvenile delinquency. There are many crime theories which are applicable to the cases of juvenile delinquency. After deep analysis of the situation, it comes to me that the theories which are best explaining the present situation are:
- Differential association
The differential association theory relates well the argument of the store clerk-Sam that most of the times the young boys are coming to the store and they are looking for steeling the things they are interested in. Actually this theory relates that how the peer pressures and the existence of the gangs lead to the youth crime. The comment given by John “All of my friends do it” is important to be considered over here. This theory suggests that the delinquent peers are actually responsible for motivating the youth for crimes and it strongly justify the youth offences associated with the criminal friends. However, the question raised by this theory is that how the delinquent peer group initially got delinquent?
Considering the present situation of John and his friends as a delinquent peer group the labeling theory well relates the answer of the Differential theory. This theory states that if once the young people are labeled as criminal then they are more likely to offend for the next time as well. It actually relates that when once John has been labeled as a deviant as by his Mom and teachers then he finally accepted his that labeled character and then associated himself with the group of similarly labeled people. The labeling theory clearly justify that how John being the boy belonging to poor family was labeled as deviant and later on John continued with that label and start offending in association with delinquent peer groups.
At the same time the concept of parens patriae should also be considered by the Judge as the mother of John is also responsible for his child’s juvenile delinquency as she is the care taker of John, although she is single mother and she argues that she has also to look after her other kids and work as well but her negligence is responsible for the adaptation of this character of his child. In most of the jurisdictions the protection of the interests of the child is focused in any case as the most important concern of the court so, the court may advise the mother of John on his this act of mischievousness for being a negligent guardian.
The analysis of the courts is not that much simple as it seems because the case filed is of juvenile delinquency for which more than one people are responsible. Actually the cause behind the John’s act is a social cause which surrounds the mother of the John for providing insufficient necessities to John and also being negligent at the same time, the teachers and the store clerk responsible for labeling the innocent youth and therefore, responsible to develop delinquent peer group. The court thus advises all these people and also at the same time advises John not to follow the delinquent peer group of his friends as he is going to be punished and his behavior will be kept under observation by the court for few upcoming months.
Brown, S. (1998). Understanding Youth and Crime (Listening to youth?). Buckingham: Open University Press.
Cloward RA and Ohlin LE. (1966). Deliquency and Opportunity:A theory of deliquent gangs. NewYork:Free Press .
Siegel, L. J. (2011). Juvenile Delinquency: The Core. Belmont, CA.