Youth Justice

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Youth Violence, A never-ending cycle
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The death of a 15 year old boy
dana unick

Dana Unick
SOC 2267B
March 17th, 2013
Prof

The murder of young 15-year-old Rodney St. Aubyn marks the third youth under the age of sixteen to die as a result of extreme gun violence this year, tragically the boy did not survive the night. He was rushed to hospital from his Toronto public-housing complex 40 Turf Grassway - located near Jane and Finch neighborhood. (Pagliaro, 2013) This area located in the north end of Toronto is known for its low income demographic, high rates of crime and violence, and dangerous atmosphere. Further investigation into the youth's past history has revealed that the deceased had attended Oakdale Park Middle School. He was known to be a bright student who played on the local basketball team and participated in the afterschool boys and girls club. (Pagliaro, 2013) According to local trustee Howard Kaplan after Rodney’s high school graduation he had begun to resort to other recreational habits and was often absent from the organized programs that he was registered in. An investigation began around 10:30 pm, Monday February 11th 2013. A young 17-year-old, whose name cannot be revealed under the Youth Criminal Justice Act, was arrested along with two others who were charged with breach of recognizance. It was said that the victim and the shooter knew one another and had been friends since elementary school. The shooter was distraught by the event. Detective Mike Carbone from the homicide squad reported, “the deceased was in company of several of his friends and at some point a firearm was produced and the deceased was shot.” (Pagliaro, 2013)The police believe that it was an “unlawful act”. Local trustee Kaplan pointed out to the media; “There are failures in the system. Why were guns being used by the group and how were these guns getting into the groups.”(Pagliaro, 2013) This statement made by Kaplan can relate to the issue of gun violence among youths that our society is facing today and how these individuals have access to such dangerous weapons. This goes to show that the laws involving guns and safety have to be altered and improved upon in order for further incidents such as this one and so many like this one to be avoided. The article goes on to explain that the local programs are continuing to better their resources to keep youth crime to its minimum. The communities touched by this event have been mourning St. Aubyn’s death along with so many others that have been a result of the gun violence within Toronto over the past several months. His death the third juvenile to be killed by gun violence in recent weeks has heightened public concern. Their hope is that police and government officials will do something about the situation before another young life is claimed by this social problem. As this was Toronto’s 6th shooting of the year the assumption is that this is becoming an issue of great concern among the youth in our society. Details of this tragic event and the reasons why this teen came into conflict with the law can be related to many factors leading up to the event. To understand this event, one can consider its details by using three specific social criminal theories consisting of, social disorganization theory, reaction theory and social bond theory. The Chicago theorists, Clifford Shaw and Henry Mckay, first introduced social disorganization theory, in 1943, this highlighted variations in crime rates in different neighborhoods. The theory is based around the fact that criminal behavior is dependent on a neighborhood’s structural and cultural state. They focus their attention on the centre of the city, known as the, ”zone in transition”. Urban decay, higher poverty rates, and increase of physical and mental disorders and higher dependency of welfare programs...
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