Teen crime is on the rise in Florida. This is stirring terror in local communities.
As of August 2012, Florida's population of 10 to 17 year old teenagers was estimated to be approximately 1.84 million. in 2012 there were 13,461 delinquency arrests where the most serious offense was misdemeanor assault or battery. There were 10,124 delinquency arrests where the most serious offense was burglary. (www.djj.state.fl.us/research) At first glance these numbers seem minuscule and of little or no importance, but according to the Florida Juvenile Justice League teen crimes like this follow a patter referred to as a "five year path" which means that authorities project these numbers to double and they expect to see these same teens in the adult court system within five years of their first charge.
I recently interviewed three people. A police officer, mother, and high school teacher. All three felt compelled to express their worry for the new generation growing up today. Maldrina Carson , a mother of two teen boys stated that she "feared for her kids life." She was also quoted saying " There used to be a time when sending your kids to school meant they were safe. Not anymore." Both Officer Harris and Mrs. Homestead stated that it is going to take the whole community to reach out and save our youth. Regardless of the effort, it has to be done. Orlando Police officers are now saying that they believe the only way to fix teen crime is to hold the parents responsible.