Crime Stats Show Rise in Percentage of African-American Juvenile Cases
Published April 3rd, 2014
GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- New crime statistics compiled by the State Attorney's office show an increase in the percentage of crimes committed by African-American juveniles in Alachua County last year.
The annual "Juvenile Offense Report" -- which breaks down the number and nature of crimes committed by children under 18 -- was presented to members of the Black on Black Crime Task Force on Wednesday.
While the overall number of crimes committed by juveniles decreased in 2013, the percentage of cases involving a black defendant was the highest its been in more than a decade, rising by five percent from the year before.
"One of the alarming factors that came out was the disproportionate minority contact," said Chief Tony Jones of the Gainesville Police Department.
"I think ... this was one of the higher years. And so as a community, it is everybody's issue, and so we'll have to come up with some strategies," said Chief Jones.
The numbers also show an increase in violent crimes committed by juveniles -- a trend some think could be traced back to the prevalence of social media.
Chief Jones says solutions to the rising crime problem will be discussed at the Task Force's next meeting on Wednesday, May 7.
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