Criminal activity is an unlawful act that is punishable by the state or the higher authority. It is an act harmful not only to an individual but also to the other people, community, society, and the state. These acts are strictly forbidden and condemned by the law. Whenever such a criminal act is performed, the offender is punished according to the particular country’s government’s rules and regulations. The age and crime relationship is the most substantial relationship tested in the field of criminology. Several pieces of research have shown that criminal activity sharply rises in adolescence. The peak age of committing a crime is 17 years, but as a share of populations, young adults ages 18-24 faced a higher risk of violent crime arrests. But the major question that arises over here is Why Youth Commits Crime ?
Today’s article will discuss 8 reasons why youth commits crime, such as:
Physical assault (with or without a weapon)
Pushing, hitting, slapping, kicking (minor crimes)
As mentioned above, committing minor crimes is one thing, but becoming a full-fledged criminal is an entirely different thing altogether. For a long time, people believed that an individual’s mind makes him a criminal. However, scientific research and many studies have shown that financial constraints or a low family income are among the leading causes as to why youth crime is increasing.
Youth Commits Crime due to Financial constraints
Teenage is a very tender age. Teenagers compare themselves with friends or other kids of their age and get complexed. To bridge the gap, they indulge in criminal activity.
Teenagers start with small crimes such as shoplifting to fulfill their day-to-day expenses, but they get engrossed deeper and deeper into darker crimes within no time.
Peer pressure is another common reason for the increase in the rates of juvenile delinquency. The surveys conducted on teen crimes have unveiled that the criminals’ friends end up becoming criminals themselves. Teens mostly commit youth crime around 16-19 years because this is an age of impulsivity and aggression, leaving them more vulnerable to the influence of those around them.
Youth Commits Crime due to Peer Pressure
Teens usually spend most of their time hanging out with their friends and are easily influenced by them. They tend to adapt to their friends’ good as well as bad habits. In this case, the habit of committing crimes. Teens commit crimes in a group because it becomes exciting, and their chances of getting caught are much lesser.
The teenage period is such a delicate time frame of a person’s life which is maximally vulnerable and prone to various influences. At this age, a child needs the utmost love and affection from the family. Teens who are neglected by their parents or whose parents are separated fall prey to criminal activities more quickly than other children of their age.
Youth Commits Crime due to Broken family
When children see their parents fighting round the clock, hurting or abusing each other, they learn violence. They practice what they learn from home. Therefore, children tend to channel their negative emotions into committing crimes.
Neglected children are the ones that are not brought up right. They don’t know societal values, social ethics, and basic morals of living as a decent human being.
Lack of job opportunities
I cannot emphasize enough that unemployment is one of the leading causes of youth crime. Many studies have established a link between unemployment and criminal activity. Without money, how will a young adult support his family? How will he pay for his education? How will he manage the bills and grocery?
Unemployment is high among young individuals. When they lack a legitimate source of income, they turn to criminal activity to feed their stomach. Lack of income also affects a young mind, adversely leading to aggressive behavior, depression, smoking, or even drugs, and it loses the ability to distinguish between right and wrong. Therefore, indulging in crime.
There are several implications of the lack of education concerning criminal activity. They are as follows:
There are very few to no job opportunities for individuals who lack formal education. Without a job, an individual cannot afford to feed himself, and without food, he will die.A youngster with no or inadequate education doesn’t know what crime is in the first place. They have no option but to rely upon and believe in what people tell them. It makes them gullible.
Education teaches you manners, helps you distinguish between right and wrong, and brings in you a sense of integrity to earn money respectfully, rather than stealing and committing crimes.
Disruptive behavior (aggression, hyperactivity, bullying)
When there is a lack of parental discipline and supervision, a teen is likely to get aggressive or hyperactive and indulge in bullying, abuse, harassment, etc.
Bullying is not just a crime in itself, but it gives rise to other criminal activities. A lot of studies have proven that teens who bully others have a greater rate of transforming into full-fledged criminals later in life.
Children who lack adequate check-and-balance and guidance from their guardians indulge in abusive behavior because they tend to take it non-seriously. Such abusive behavior opens doors for other crimes.
Teens who show abusive behavior towards others or remain in the company of abusive friends end up committing crimes. However, in some cases, victims of bullying become criminals to take revenge on society or their abuser.
Lack of social commitment
The youth is the backbone of any society and plays a significant role in determining its future. All the other age groups, including the kids, the middle-aged, and senior citizens, look up to them and expect a lot from them. Therefore, the youth’s societal role is to renew and refresh society’s current status, including innovations, skills, and leadership, and maintain an excellent culture, societal values, and developmental projects.
Lack of social commitment means a lack of sense of responsibility towards the betterment of society. Youngsters who lack social commitment tend to care less about their and their society’s reputation. They don’t care for what others think of them and therefore tend to be selfish towards others’ needs. Such individuals are only concerned about fulfilling their needs and are more prone to become criminals.
Drug or alcohol abuse
Why do you think alcohol and drugs are illegal for the youth? Of course, there is a reason. There are a lot of reasons, but the major one is a CRIME. Consuming alcohol or taking drugs as a minor is a crime itself, but it leads to various other criminal activities as well.
Drug abuse is associated with both violent and income-generating crimes by the youth. Drugs and alcohol abuse affect young minds’ judgment ability and reduce their attention span, thereby increasing the chances of them committing crimes like robbery or vandalism. After consuming alcohol, an individual’s judgment gets cloudy, leading him to become a part of the crime he never intended to commit.
The bottom line
It is effortless for teens and young adults to indulge in criminal activities if they are not appropriately guided and supervised by their parents. Parents need to pay special attention when their child enters teenage. The child needs their love, care, and affection. If he is neglected or abandoned, he is more likely to become a criminal.
A child needs proper education to have a basic knowledge of the values he needs to follow and those he has to condemn. Adequate education also means he won’t have to beg for employment and steal to feed his stomach. A well-educated teen will also choose his friend circle wisely, stay away from bad habits such as alcohol and drug abuse, and will be committed to doing good for his society.