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Impact of US Juvenile Justice System on Teens in Philadelphia and Pennsylvania

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Adverse Childhood experiences are highly associated with the juvenile justice system because whatever a child has grown up with can inspire their decisions as they get older, Research has shown that adverse childhood experiences are associated with delinquency, along with violence and more chronic/Severe criminal careers. Adverse childhood experiences are strongly and completely associated with sexual offending, however negatively associated with homicide and serious person/property offending. The same effects of adverse childhood experiences were also seen among African Americans, Hispanics, and whites. The concept of adverse childhood experiences to account for the negative health and behavior consequences of various sorts of childhood abuse, neglect, and exposure to household dysfunction, Individuals who endured additional adverse childhood experiences attended suffer the most throughout the life course and have the greatest number of health issues, maladaptive behaviors, and uncontrolled psychiatric conditions. There is also compelling evidence that adverse childhood experiences are particularly serious risk factors for more pathological forms of offending.

For and colleagues reported that each additional adverse childhood experience increased the likelihood of serious, violent, and chronic juvenile offending by 35%. The case that a youth who has been exposed to the greatest range of adverse childhood experiences can essentially be at the greatest risk of offending. Youth who had six adverse childhood experiences were 72% less likely to be committed for homicide, 413% more likely to be committed for a sexual offense, and 500% less likely to be committed for a serious person/ property offense.

Sources(2-3): The black child-savers: Racial democracy and juvenile justice. Theory in Action, 7(2), 128-134. Retrieved from

How does the US juvenile justice system affect teens/ Area: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania?

“clear cut racial biases are built into the juvenile justice system, disproportionately impact African Americans. He said 73% of all children adjudicated delinquent in Philadelphia are African American. Just 0.6 percent are white.”, the juvenile justice system in Philadelphia is unfair towards teens because According to the District Attorney’s Office, the majority of children in the juvenile justice system have not committed violent crimes, race also plays a role in the juvenile justice system, the system punishes the poor, and data shows many of the teenagers that end up in the juvenile system in Philadelphia are black, with a small percentage of them are white, so privilege also has an impact on the Juvenile Justice System.

“juvenile crime is down in Pennsylvania, but children who have been labeled as delinquent for relatively minor offenses are often trapped in a system that doesn’t offer them the help they need, so they are sent away from their homes,” children in Pennsylvania are serving sentences for minor crimes, there being taken away from their families because people feel as though they “need to be punished”, but there not taking into consideration that teenagers and young adults aren’t fully developed mentally, physically, and emotionally so there going to make mistakes. “Keeping children in isolation can have long standing and devastating consequences on youth, including trauma, psychosis, depression, anxiety and an increased likelihood of self-harm,” Krasner said.”, to keep a child in Solitary confinement for long periods of time to have long-lasting health issues Especially on teenagers and young adults who aren’t fully developed. and (4)

(This took place in Philadelphia)

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“Shavonne grew up during the height of the crack epidemic, in a neighborhood plagued by drug use and dealing. From a young age, people she knew and loved were battling with and losing to drug addiction. In 1992, Shavonne was 16 years old when she was involved in a robbery in which a man tragically lost his life. At 17, Shavonne was automatically sentenced to serve life in prison without the possibility of parole.”

Shavonne Robbins was put into the juvenile justice system at the young age of 16, Shavonne trusted her friend, driving him away from a house not knowing he had killed someone while she was waiting in the car. she was charged with Second Degree Murder and spent the past two decades in prison. She is now free, but she is an example how the juvenile justice system in Philadelphia is unfair because they didn’t take the time to look more into the case, they took away 25 years away from someone that was wrongfully accused, she didn’t even commit the crime.

Source (5)

“ In February 1969, when Nole was 17, he and two other teens robbed an 81-year-old store owner at gunpoint. Prosecutors said Nole, during the robbery, hit the shopkeeper in the stomach with the butt of his gun, which Nole denies. Soon afterward, the man died of damage to his abdominal aorta. His codefendants were charged as juveniles, serving 11 and 18 months, but Nole was prosecuted as an adult and received a life sentence.”

Nole is am example of how teens are being charged with crimes that havent been fully Analyzed, it says nothing about him having fingerprints on the gun and also doesn’t have any proof or evidence that he hit the storekeeper with the gun, he spent a majority of his life in jail for a crime he most likely didn’t commit. also in 1969 there still racism especially in the juvenile justice system or the justice system , for him to get charged as an adult when he is still a child didn’t make any sense because he was still a minor.

In Conclusion the juvenile justice system in Philadelphia has treated teenagers unfair over the years mainly because it evolves around race and bias, in Pennsylvania alone there is more than 500 juvenile offenders serving life sentences for minor crimes, and racial biases also takes place because 73% of juveniles in the system or African-American rolling 0.6% or white. People are so concerned about incarcerating them and there not looking at the long-term effects.

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Impact of US Juvenile Justice System on Teens in Philadelphia and Pennsylvania. (2022, July 14). Edubirdie. Retrieved January 31, 2023, from
“Impact of US Juvenile Justice System on Teens in Philadelphia and Pennsylvania.” Edubirdie, 14 Jul. 2022,
Impact of US Juvenile Justice System on Teens in Philadelphia and Pennsylvania. [online]. Available at: <> [Accessed 31 Jan. 2023].
Impact of US Juvenile Justice System on Teens in Philadelphia and Pennsylvania [Internet]. Edubirdie. 2022 Jul 14 [cited 2023 Jan 31]. Available from:
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