In recent years in the US the average age for first arrest has dropped significantly, and younger boys and girls are committing crimes. Between 60–80% percent of adolescents, and pre-adolescents engage in some form of juvenile offense. These can range from status offenses, to property crimes and violent crimes. The percent of teens who offend is so high that it would seem to be a cause for worry. However, juvenile offending can be considered normative adolescent behavior. This is because most teens tend to offend by committing non-violent crimes, only once or a few times, and only during adolescence. It is when adolescents offend repeatedly or violently that their offending is likely to continue beyond adolescence, and become increasingly violent. It is also likely that if this is the case, they began offending and displaying antisocial behavior even before reaching adolescence.
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