U.S Department of Justice and The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Reports Record Low of Juvenile Arrests

August 21, 2019

The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention and the National Institute of Justice today released Juvenile Arrests, 2017, which documents recent trends by analyzing arrest data reported by local law enforcement agencies to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report. Overall, juvenile arrests have been declining for more than a decade, but patterns vary by demographic group and offense.

In 2017, U.S. law enforcement agencies arrested more than 809,700 persons younger than 18 years old. This was the lowest number since at least 1980—and 70 percent below its 1996 peak of nearly 2.7 million. However, juvenile arrests for certain offenses increased in the last few years.

Relative declines in arrests have been greater for boys than for girls across many offenses. As a result, the female share of juvenile arrests has grown from 18 percent in 1980 to 29 percent in 2017.