Readers discuss youth reoffending rates in North SOmerset

Police car.

Police car. - Credit: Nick Page. Hayman.

Readers discussed the news that young offenders in North Somerset on average went on to commit a further eight offences after their first crime.

Ministry of Justice (MoJ) data shows 80 young offenders aged under 18 left custody, received a non-custodial conviction or were cautioned in 2017-18.

Of those, 28 (35 per cent) went on to commit another offence within 12 months.

The reoffenders committed 217 further crimes among them - an average of 7.8 offences each.

Nationally, 38 per cent of juvenile offenders in 2017-18 committed another crime within a year - compared with 41 per cent from 2016-17 - amid a steep fall in the number of juvenile first-time entrants to the criminal justice system.

The MoJ figures show that, nationally, juveniles are also more likely to reoffend than adults.

In North Somerset, 28 per cent of adult offenders reoffended over the same period. Across England and Wales, 29 per cent of adults reoffended.

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Dr Tim Bateman, chairman of the National Association for Youth Justice, warned the falling numbers of juvenile offenders and reoffenders nationally was only partly down to children being less likely to break the law.

He said: 'The main explanation is a shift in how minor lawbreaking is treated - an increasingly large proportion of minor misdemeanours result in an informal response that doesn't get into the figures.

Greg Hodge said: 'Perhaps it's because the environment acts as causality to behaviour, but instead of looking at causality, we treat the symptom with punishment.'

Julia Dean added: 'Our justice system is a joke that's why, our prisons and police are in desperate need of funding, the pressure on these officers is not right.'

'Our government needs to step up.'

Kareem Kasbar opined: 'Sadly some kids these days lack discipline and respect to others.

'It sad some parents don't toughen their kids up. It's sad really.'

Vicky Sjogren Laughed: 'no punishment from parents, growing up, a system that fails at every step, no wonder.'

Vicky Diamond questioned: 'More than a third? Rubbish, I'm sure it's far more than that they just don't get caught.'