A school resource officer is a specialist who understands the different laws and procedures governing juveniles. Imagine you are a school resource officer who has been tasked with evaluating Philip’s case as described below. You will create a report based on this case to share with the school authorities and the police department to build awareness on the underlying causes for juvenile delinquent behavior and highlight the challenges faced by the police in handling juveniles.
Scenario: Philip grew up in a tough, lower-socioeconomic neighborhood that was characterized by several cultures and high mobility. He never felt close to his parents, and he did not perform well in school. He valued such things as his fighting ability and his ability to con people. When he was 10 years old, he began to associate with delinquent peers who taught him how to steal cars and burglarize houses. He received rewards from his peers for his behavior and did not feel guilty for his delinquent acts. Instead, he would say that the people he stole from were wealthy enough to afford to replace the items, and most had insurance anyway.
Philip has been arrested for a house burglary. He shows no sign of remorse for what he has done and is being disrespectful to the police officers. His parents are not cooperating with the police and the intake officer refuses to take Philip in, as there is a space crunch in the holding facility. The police let Philip go after giving him a warning. This is Philip’s first time in the juvenile justice system.
Research juvenile causation theories and the problems faced by the police in handling juveniles.
Write a 700- to 1,050-word report to the school authorities and the police department.
Address the following in your paper:
- Which social theories can be used to explain Philip’s behavior, and which social theory is most applicable here?
- How is the deterrence theory applicable in this situation? Explain.
- Describe the best way in which the police should process Philip’s case. Is this crime a status offense or a delinquent act?
- Based on the type of crime, how should the police respond?
- Which discretionary options can be used by the police in this scenario?
- How should the police officer convey the seriousness of the charges to Philip?
- What alternative steps or placements can a police officer try when a juvenile is not taken in by the intake officer?
- What intervention programs could help Philip deal with his delinquent behavior?
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