Friday, May 16, 2008

The Boston Gun Project; Youth Crime in the UK; Bhutan and Singapore

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1. Some places are more violent than others. New Orleans, for example, is less safe than Havana in Cuba.

London in the UK is less safe than Tehran.



In the UK, violent crime by young people has risen by nearly 40% in the past three years.

Robberies committed by under-18s were up by 45%


(40% rise in violent crime by under-18s )


Photo by babasteve http://www.flickr.com/photos/babasteve/sets/781179/ Sets Tags Archives Favorites Profile

2. According to TIME Magazine, 28 March 2008 (Time magazine highlights Britain's violent youth / Britain's Out-of-Control Kids) :

"Last year more than a fifth of Britons avoided going out at night rather than risk encounters with a .... form of terror: groups of children. Britons are frightened of their own young...

"In 2000, Euan Blair, the son of the Prime Minister, was arrested for being 'drunk and incapable.'

"Twenty-seven teenagers were murdered in London last year by youths wielding guns or knives...

3. In FAMILIES WITHOUT FATHERHOOD, Norman Dennis & George Erdos argue that the decline of the family has led to an increase in crime.

According to a study in 2000 by the OECD, British parents spend less time with their children compared to other nationalities, 'leaving them more open to influence from their peers and a commercially driven, celebrity-obsessed media'. (Britain's Out-of-Control Kids)

In family homes, in schools, and on the street, young British yobs are being allowed to get away with it?


4. Youth crime in places like SINGAPORE, MALTA and BHUTAN used to be extremely rare.

The introduction of nasty films, and other media, has changed all that.

Crime figures in Singapore, Malta and Bhutan, although still lower than in Britain, tended to rise at the same time as horrid media material was introduced.

"Four years ago, Bhutan, the fabled Himalayan Shangri-la, became the last nation on earth to introduce television. Suddenly a culture, barely changed in centuries, was bombarded by 46 cable channels. And all too soon came Bhutan's first crime wave - murder, fraud, drug offences."
http://www.guardian.co.uk/weekend/story/0,3605,975769,00.html

5. Part of the problem in the UK is the incompetent UK criminal justice system.

The Glasgow Herald reported, "The trial of 3 men accused of assault was haulted because a signature was missing from the charge sheet..."

"3 trials involving drugs charges collapsed because of search warrant blunders..."

In THE FAILURE OF BRITAIN'S POLICE, Dennis and Erdos report that in December 2002 there were 282 robberies of personal property in Lambeth.

This figure, for one borough for one month, exceeded all robberies, personal and business, for the whole of England and Wales in any year between the two world wars, with the exception of 1932 (342) and 1938 (287).

In 1921 there were 57,000 police officers dealing with 103,000 crimes - two to each officer.

But in 2002/2003 134,000 police officers had to deal with 5,899,000 crimes.

1921 - 103,000 crimes recorded
1955 - 500,000 crimes recorded
2003 - 5,899,000 crimes recorded



6. Bobbies on the beat

Some of Scotland's most crime-ridden areas have seen crime rates fall by a fifth since old-fashioned police street patrols were introduced. (bobbies on the beat do cut crime)

In Glasgow, in 2007, serious assaults fell by 38 % in city-centre zones that were given extra police foot patrols at nights and weekends.

Edinburgh has seen a similar success.

Graph: http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Image:Intlhomrate.svg / http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:AudeVivere

7. Alasdair Palmer and Julie Henry in the UK Sunday Telegraph, 26 Agust 2007, wrote about Why violent crime has doubled in a decade - Telegraph

David Fraser, a former UK probation officer and author of A Nation Fit for Criminals, is quoted as saying: "so few young criminals actually get sent to prison."

"The courts and the probation service still use every possible excuse to avoid imposing a custodial sentence," says Fraser.

The Sunday telegraph refers to Peter Williams, 18-year-old, who committed dozens of serious crimes but avoided jail; then, while he was serving his "community sentence", he murdered Marian Bates in 2003.

The Sunday Telegraph article suggests that very tough sanctions can reduce violent youth crime.

The Sunday Telegraph refers to Boston, Massachusetts, which, in the early 1990s, experienced a huge increase in street shootings by young gangsters.

Between 1991 and 1995, Boston's average number of "youth homicides" was more than 40 a year.

The Boston Gun Project (Boston Gun Project) reduced the number of killings by more than 60%.

1. Researchers identified who the gang members were and where they lived.

2. The police and probation services tracked them down and prosecuted them.

3. Tough sentences were handed out - and publicised.

One poster read:

Problem: Freddie Cardoza. Gang member.
Solution: Criminal Conviction.
Arrested with one bullet.
Sentence: 19 years, 7 months.
No possibility of parole.
Address: Otisville Federal Correction Institute,
Maximum Security Facility, New York.

The Sunday Telegraph points out that in the UK :

1. the police are not accountable to the electorate,
2. long sentences would be difficult to impose because of the Human Rights Act.

However, the Sunday Telegraph article continues: "even much shorter sentences, properly enforced, would have significant effect... We could stop the rot - by reinforcing the rule of law."

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