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Juvenile Court Placement of Adjudicated Youth, 1988-1997

NCJ Number
Date Published
October 2000
2 pages
More than one in four adjudicated delinquency cases in the United States resulted in out-of-home placements in 1997, and the number of out-of-home placements between 1988 and 1997 increased across all racial groups.
In 1997, 28 percent (163,200) of adjudicated delinquency placements resulted in a judicial disposition of out-of-home placement (residential treatment centers, juvenile correctional facilities, foster homes, or group homes); 55 percent resulted in a probation order, and 13 percent resulted in some other disposition, such as restitution, fines, community service, or referral to other treatment agencies. Four percent were released at disposition without sanction. Of 71,700 juveniles in out-of-home placement as of October 1997, 70 percent were in public facilities and 30 percent were in private facilities. Juveniles adjudicated for drug offenses were less likely to be placed outside the home than juveniles adjudicated for other offense types. The number of adjudicated delinquency cases that resulted in out-of-home placements rose from 104,800 in 1988 to 163,200 in 1997. The largest percentage increase was in the number of person offenses cases resulting in placement, which grew 103 percent from 1988 to 1997. Placements for drug offense cases and public order offense cases each grew 77 percent during the period, while placements for property offense cases grew 27 percent. Of the estimated 163,200 adjudicated cases that resulted in out-of-home placements in 1997, 60 percent (97,900) involved white youths, 36 percent (59,200) involved black youths, and 4 percent (6,000) involved youths of other races. Home conditions and lack of available community resources were cited as possible factors contributing to racial disparities in placement practices. 2 tables and 1 figure

Date Published: October 1, 2000