FBI uniform crime reports

Year                                                            Adult arrests                                            Juvenile arrests
1999 -8% -10%
1998 -5% -11%
1997 -2% -6%
1996 -3% -6%
1995 0% -2%

Percentage of  arrests in which arrestee was
          <15 y.o    <18.
1999: 6%             17%           http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_99/99crime/99c4_01.pdf              no page indicated
1998: 6%             18%          http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_98/98crime/98cius22.pdf               page 210
1997: 6%              19%          http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/97crime/97crime4.pdf              p. 222
1996: 6.1%           19%          http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/96CRIME/96crime4.pdf          p. 214
1995: 6.2%           18%          http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/95CRIME/95crime4.pdf          p. 208

"Offenses against family and children"

                <15        <18        18+        all ages
1999     2,137        6,093        86,756        92,849    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_99/99crime/99c4_06.pdf  Table 38 p. 222
                                                                                   and Table 41 p. 228
1998    2,549        6,945        92,831        99,776    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_98/98crime/98cius23.pdf
                                                                                    Table 38 p.220   and Table 41 p. 226
1997    2,419        6,843       98,154  104,997    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/97crime/97crime4.pdf  Table 41 p.238
                                                                                    and Table 38. p 232
1996    1,879        5,850        97,950        103,800    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/96CRIME/96crime4.pdf  Table 41
                                                                                    page.230 and Table 38 p. 225
1995    1,536        5,040        99,912        104,952       http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/95CRIME/95crime4.pdf  Table 38
                                                                                     page 218 and Table 41 p. 224

A possible explanation for the rise in  <15 domestic violence is an increase in reporting by sibling victims of sibling-sibling violence as a result of school programs encouraging children to report abuse.

I need to check the breakdown of domestic violence to see how much child perpetrated violence is against parents and how much is against siblings.

Murder and Non-negligent manslaughter

                <15            <18            18+           all ages
1999        114            919            8,808        9,727    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_99/99crime/99c4_06.pdf  T.38 p.222
1998        139            1,470        10,865        12,335 http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_98/98crime/98cius23.pdf  T.38 p.220
1997        183            1,731        11,033        12,764 http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/97crime/97crime4.pdf T.38 p.232
1996        257            2,172        12,275        14,447 http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/96CRIME/96crime4.pdf T.38 p.224
1995        346            2,560        14,141        16,701 http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/95CRIME/95crime4.pdf T.38 p.218

Disorderly Conduct

                <15            <18            18+           all ages
1999        42,467       113,303      308,359    421,662    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_99/99crime/99c4_06.pdf  T.38 p.222
1998        46,491        132,410        369,456    501,866   http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_98/98crime/98cius23.pdf  T.38 p.220
1997        51,212        148,926        412,695    561,621    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/97crime/97crime4.pdf T.38 p.232
1996        53,726        159,951        466,967    626,918  http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/96CRIME/96crime4.pdf T.38 p224
1995        46,221        130,467        431,175    561,642 http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/95CRIME/95crime4.pdf T.38 p.218


                <15            <18            18+           all ages
1999        3,874        5,791            5,020        10,811    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_99/99crime/99c4_06.pdf  T.38 p.222
1998        4,199   6,324            5,820        12,144    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_98/98crime/98cius23.pdf  T.38 p.220
1997        4,601        6,914            6,917        13,831    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/97crime/97crime4.pdf T.38 p.232
1996        4,887        7,302            6,453        13,755    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/96CRIME/96crime4.pdf T.38 p.224
1995        5,268        7,834            7,131        14,965    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/95CRIME/95crime4.pdf T.38 p.218

                <15            <18            18+           all ages
1999        33,736        76,319        105,724    182,043     http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_99/99crime/99c4_06.pdf  T.38 p.222
1998        39,716        90,156        123,339    213,495      http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_98/98crime/98cius23.pdf  T.38 p.220
1997        42,288        94,097        125,397    219,494    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/97crime/97crime4.pdf T.38 p.232
1996        46,353        103,333      1130,882  234,215  http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/96CRIME/96crime4.pdf T.38 p.224
1995        49,308        104,425        128,277   232,702 http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/95CRIME/95crime4.pdf T.38 p.218

Weapons Possession

               <15            <18            18+           all ages
1999    8,945            27,596        86,284        113,880     http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_99/99crime/99c4_06.pdf  T.38 p.222
1998    10,313        32,232        103,817        136,049    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_98/98crime/98cius23.pdf  T.38 p.220
1997    11,160        36,345        116,023        152,368    http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/97crime/97crime4.pdf T.38 p.232
1996    11,684        39,363        121,795        161,158   http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/96CRIME/96crime4.pdf T.38 p.224
1995    13,135        43,211        144,026        187,237   http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/95CRIME/95crime4.pdf T.38 p.218

Federal Bureau of Investigation - Uniform Crime Reports - Crime in the United States -1999
Section II. Crime Index Offenses Reported.  Page 6.
"The 1999 Crime Index total, estimated at 11.6 million offenses, is the lowest since 1978.  This total represented the eighth consecutive annual decline in the Crime Index, which is down 7 percent from the 1998 number."


Robert Surgenor quotes:
Dedication page:  "To Dad - Whose efforts to teach me honesty were reinforced by the example that he lived."

xvi:    "As time went on and I studied the nonspanking philosophy, I began to better understand what this group stands for.  I now believe that the agenda of the antispanking bunch is much more ominous than many of us suspect.  The nonspanking crowd is a close-knit group who have developed "peer-reviewed published research" they claim proves that corporal punishment is harmful to children.  Their attitude is one of arrogance.  Their movement is humanistic.  Their religion is atheistic."

12:   "I was never slapped in the face as a child, although I remember being slapped on the back of the head.  Although some advocates of corporal punishment do not condone face slapping (and at least one state prohibits the practice, considering it child abuse), I know numerous parents who have given the open palm to the cheek of a sassy offspring with no noticable adverse effects.

13:  "For thousands of years parents have squeezed that trapezius muscle and boxed those ears...And do you know what? They turned out alright.  In fact they turned out normal."

43: "As far as the FBI is concerned, all of the crime that is occurring in Illinois is occurring in six cities.  It's no wonder that the politicians are boasting that the crime rate is dropping.  Little does  the public know that the crime rate is exploding.  It just isn't being reported....The one thing to keep in mind when studying the FBI's Uniform Crime Reports is that after 1992, the overall crime figures are not accurate.  One can, however, recognize the increase in juvenile crime over adult crime.

46:  "There's a saying that 'liars figure, but figures can't lie.'  To a certain extent that is true.  But anyone with any intelligence at all knows that sometimes statistics can be manipulated to suit the manipulator's needs."

46:  "My point is that most of the time, anyone can make figures work for them."

48: "Without any doubt there is a steady increase in crime by committed juveniles over the last twenty years."

66:  "The problem is that parents today are not cognizant of the law and, therefore, are afraid of being charged with child abuse if they spank their child.  Nothing could be further from the truth."  THIS CAN ACCOUNT FOR TH 98.1% FIGURE!

71:  "I provided everyone involved in our conversation with proof that a parent can spank his or her child.  The court advocate indicated that she had been working with the courts for several years and was unaware that the law was worded as such.  Good grief!  It's no wonder parents are afraid to discipline their kids.  Social workers, advocates of (sic)  abused children, and ever law enforcement officers are often uninformed and ignorant of the law [permitting parents to legally spank their children].THIS CAN ACCOUNT FOR TH 98.1% FIGURE!

76:  "One of the problems that we have in our society is the general public's ignorance of the law" [permitting parents to legally spank their children].THIS CAN ACCOUNT FOR TH 98.1% FIGURE!

78:  "A closer investigation of these studies [on the effects of spanking] uncover (sic) faulty information and statistics.  Engrained in every one of the "no-spank" studies are subtle tricks designed to deceive those who read them.

87:  "The ages of the mothers who participated in this survey ranged from fourteen to twenty-one years." (regarding Straus et al., 1997).

90:  "None of the kids who belong to the Crips, Bloods or Folks are receiving discipline from their parents.

105:  "Children will act towards their parents in one of two ways.  They will either be subordinate or insubordinate.  Let me ask all of the parents who are reading these words, would you rather have your fifteen-year-old teenager be subordinate to you or insubordinate to you?  Would you rather have your teenager obey your orders and be subject to your authority, or would you rather your teenager tell you to take a hike?"

119:   "The reason I do not exceed the speed limit is because I fear the consequences that can be imposed on me by the police officer and the judge.   A child will not respect his parents without fearing them.  A child with "no fear" is a child headed for disaster."

127-128:  "The gay community doesn't care if the majority of people disdain their lifestyle.  The militant feminist isn't worried about public opinion.  Neither group is concerned that its agenda is in direct conflict with God's plan.  The defiant attitude of these groups is obvious.  The same goes for our younger generation.  More and more, we are encountering kids with no fear of authority.  Soon, we will have an entire generation of children who have never been spanked - out of control and defying authority as they grow into adulthood.  An entire generation of people with no fear.  Not afraid of their parents, not afraid of the police, not afraid of God... It will be easy for that generation to gather together under the direction of the Antichrist in an attempt to defeat the coming Christ.  Without God in their upbringing and without the fear of authority that is instilled in a child with the use of corporal punishment, millions of people will gather in the last day in the valley of Megiddo in the final battle of Armageddon... The [anti-spanking movement] is mounting an attack against parental authority.  I believe Satan is using this group to accomplish his objective to eliminate the fear of authority from the coming generations."

134:  "Fortunately today, the law still protects parents who wish to use corporal punishment in the training of their children.  Most parents just don't realize it."  THIS CAN ACCOUNT FOR TH 98.1% FIGURE

135:   "I don't not believe that the antispanking movement's agenda is based on the fear that spanking is abusive to children.  I believe that there is enough overwhelming evidence to prove otherwise.  Much of the "evidence" given by the NSA to prove their theory has been fabricated.  Some of the statistics given by the NSA have been altered in order to support their theory.  As previously mentioned, these statistics need only be confirmed by checking the FBI's Uniform Crime Reports; the differences between the actual figures and those given by the NSA are so blatantly obvious."  HIS ENTIRE ASSERTION IS BASED ON HIS OWN MISUNDERSTANDING OF ONE STATISTIC GIVEN TO HIM BY RANDY COX.

137:  "The majority of teens who end up assaulting their parents have never been spanked.  They are not afraid of their parents.  There is no fear of consequences.  In the overwhelming number of cases, kids who attack their parents have never been spanked.  The correlation is blatantly obvious to those of us in law enforcement who deal with out of control children.

138:  "I will reiterate over and over again that the kids who are ending up in trouble for assaulting others, including their parents, have never been spanked....With the exception of those kids who have a genuine mental illness, every child I have ever dealt with who has physically assaulted his/her parents has never been spanked growing up.  What these two "experts" have written is a statement that cannot be substantiated with facts or statistics."  IRONICALLY, IT IS RS WHO CANNOT BACK UP HIS ASSERTIONS WITH FACTS.  HE IS DEBUNKING THE STATEMENT THAT "CHILDREN FROM FAMILIES THAT SPANK ARE MORE LIKELY TO USE AGGRESSION TO HANDLE CONFLICTS." THIS ALSO CONTRADICTS RS'S OWN CASE HISTORY OF BARBARA ON P. 9, WHOSE STEPFATHER WAS REPORTED FOR CHILD ABUSE.

140:  "We need to quit emphasizing high self-esteem at the expense of respect for authority and respect for others."

149:  "Getting spanked by your parent is frightening.  That is part of the negative consequence that is associated with negative behavior.  That is part of the necessary programming of the child's mind that follows them throughout his/her lifetime.  That is the major problem with the out-of-control youth of today."

Here is the link to Jordan's page:
The Influence of Corporal Punishment on Crime
by Adah Maurer, Ph.D. and James S. Wallerstein (1987)


It has contrary evidence, showing that 0% of juvenile delinquents were never spanked.

On March 30 2001 I spoke with William Fromwiller who asked me to submit a request in writing for Cuyahoga county rates of juvenile domestic violence against parents.
William Fromwiller
Clerks Office
Juvenile Court
2210 Cedar Ave.
Cleveland OH 44116

RS mentions 1996 UCR saying "all crime in Illinois is supposed to have happened in just 6 cities."  Here is the link to the UCR discussion of  NIBRS conversion to the new reporting system in 1996
http://www.fbi.gov/ucr/Cius_97/96CRIME/96crime7.pdf  p. 389

    "Several states provide their UCR data in the expanded NIBRS format.  For presentation in this book, the NIBRS data base was constructed to allow for such conversion so that UCR's long-running time series could continue.
    "Tables 1 through 5 and 7 of this publication contain statistics for the entire United States.  Because not all law enforcement agencies provide data for complete reporting periods, estimated crime counts are included in these presentations.  Offense estimation occurs within each of three areas: Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSA's), cities outside MSA's, and rural counties.  Using the known crime experiences of similar areas within a state, the estimates are computed by assigning the same proportional crime volumes to nonreporting agencies.  The size of agency; type of jurisdiction, e.g. police department versus sheriff's office; and geographical location are considered in the estimation process.
    "Because of efforts to convert to the NIBRS in recent years, it has become necessary to estimate totals for some states.  Also, the inability of some state UCR Programs to provide forcible rape figures in accordance with UCR guidelines and other problems at the state levels have required unique estimation procedures."

RS's claim that the UCR acted as if Illinois crime happened in only 6 cities in 1996 is false.  Illinois crime was estimated in 1996 on the same basis as 1995. Regarding 1995 estimations,

    "Concerning Illinois, valid Crime Index counts were available for most of the largest cities.  For other agencies, the only available counts were generated without application of the UCR Heirarchy Rule.  (the Hierarchy Rule requires that only the most serious offense in a multiple-offens criminal incident is counted.)   To arrive at a state estimate comparable to the rest of the Nation, the total supplied by the Illinois State Program (which was inflated because of the nonapplication of the Heirarchy Rule) was reduced by the proportion of multiple offenses reported within single incidents in the available NIBRS data.  Valid totals for the large cities were excluded from the reduction process."  (p. 390)

Sections for the RS webpage:

Are we experiencing a rise in juvenile crime?
    UCR figures
    BJSNCVS figures
    RS truncates his charts after peaks so as not to show declines in juv. crime
        RS uses UCR data when it suits his argument but dismisses it as inaccurate when it doesn't.
            RS falsely states that 1996 UCR data for Illinois was based exclusively on 6 cities.
            UCR data for 1995-1999 fails to support RS's claim that juvenile crime is rising faster than adult crime.  In fact it fell steadily throughout this period, and fell by a greater percentage than the fall in adult crime in all five years.
        RS's jurisdiction, Cuyahoga County, OH, is no exception to the rule. Total Juvenile delinquency arrests/100000 teenagers fell 22% between 1995 and 1999 when he published his book.  Juvenile property crimes/100000 teenagers  in RS's district peaked in 1991 and had declined by 33.1% by 1999 when he published his book.  Juvenile homicides /100000 teenagers peaked in 1992 and had decreased by 60.2% by 1999.  Total juvenile violent crime/100000 teenagers peaked in 1997 and had declined by 9% by 1999.  All subcategories of Cuyahoga County violent juvenile crime showed declines from earlier peaks except domestic violence, which was up 446%.  This is highly anomalous and may be due to an increase in reporting of sibling sibling violence rather than an increase in actual incidence.

Have parents abandoned spanking?
     RS suggests throughout his book that a parents have widely abandoned all use of corporal punishment but provides no evidence for this.  On p. 128 he predicts that "Soon, we will have an entire generation of children who have never been spanked."   But he cites a study on p. 94 which found that 90% of American parents spank their children.

Do nonspanked children account for 98.1% of domestic violence against parents by children?
    If only 10% of children are raised without spanking (p. 94) but are responsible for 98.1% of parent assaults, this would make nonspanked children over 465 times as likely to assault their parents as spanked children.  Why has no other researcher been able to find evidence for this alleged correlation?  No other research has found any evidence that nonspanked children are more aggressive or antisocial, but rather just the opposite (wallerstein? and maurer 1987; Straus 1991.
    RS states in multiple places in his book that parents don't realize spanking their child is not a crime (p. 66, 71, 76, 134).  If parents believe spanking their child is a crime, it would appear likely that parents who spank their child will deny doing so when bluntly asked by a police detective.  Yet this possibility never crosses RS's mind.

Has child domestic violence against parents increased 700% in Cuyahoga County?
    RS provides no other information.  He does not state the base years for this figure, nor does he provide his readers with the raw numbers upon which it is based.  Cuyahoga County juvenile crime records track domestic violence arrests, but do not break them down according to the relationship to the perpetrator.  Hence, we have only RS's word for it.  Cuyahoga County juvenile domestic violence arrests are on the rise, unlike all other categories of violent juvenile crime, which have fallen from peak levels.   Juvenile domestic violence arrests in 1999 were up 446.6% from their low point in 1991 (the lowest recorded rate for the years available from [cite data source]).  However, if this is the time period RS used, then other types of juvenile domestic violence besides child-on-parent must have decreased as a percentage of the total in order for child-on-parent assaults to have increased by 700%.  Why should children with "no fear" assault siblings at a lower rate, or a slower rate of increase than assaulting parents?

"Without any doubt there is a steady increase in crime by committed juveniles over the last twenty years." - RS (p.48)

"During the period from 1987 to 1994, while  the total annual number of murders by juveniles doubled, murders of family members held constant".   http://www.ncjrs.org/html/ojjdp/nationalreport99/chapter3.pdf  p.56

"More than 1 in 4 identified juvenile murderers in 1997 were in 8 of the Nation's more than 3,000 counties"
http://www.ncjrs.org/html/ojjdp/nationalreport99/chapter3.pdf  p.57

"The juvenile violent crime arrest rate increased from 1988 to 1994 but has declined since then"\
http://www.ncjrs.org/html/ojjdp/nationalreport99/chapter5.pdf  p. 120

"Juvenile property crime arrest rates changed little from 1980 to 1997, unlike violent crime arrest rates."
http://www.ncjrs.org/html/ojjdp/nationalreport99/chapter5.pdf  p.126

http://www.ncjrs.org/html/ojjdp/nationalreport99/chapter5.pdf  p.132 has an interesting discussion about how changes in public attitudes towards some crimes including domestic violence could have influenced juvenile arrest rates: more enforcement of curfews, mandatory arrests in domestic violence cases,  juvenile arrests for domestic violence which would have been called merely "incorrigibles" in hears past.  "Juvenile violent crime arrest rates were higher in 1997 than in 1980 even though victims' reports of juvenile violent crime did not increase during this period."  "Juvenile drug abuse arrest rates nearly doubled between 1992 and 1996.  Self report studies do not indicate a large change in drug use among youth during this period.  Since most of the increase in drug abuse arrests was attributable to arrests for marijuana possession it seems clear that communities became more concerned about marijuana use among youth and that law enforcement, responding to this concern, arrested more juveniles for this offense."  During [1980-1996], legislatibe and policy changes required a formal law enforcement response to domestic violence incidents.  This change would have resulted in more aggravated and simple assault arrests, but no additional robbery arrests.  It would have had its greatest impace on the arrests for middle-age persons.  It also would have caused arrests to increase without a change in victim-reported crime levels.
    "Therefore, one could explain the increase in violent crime arrest rates between 1980 and 1997  by an increase in law enforcement response to the crime of domestic violence.  Society has become more sensitive to problems caused by domestic violence and has chosen to no longer ignore a crime that has been a part of American culture for generations.  Juveniles are not immune to domestic violence arrests.  Family problems, even some that in past years may have been classified as status offenses (e.g. incorrigibility), can now result in an assault arrest.  This logica also explains why violent crime arrests over the past decade have increased proportionately more for juvenile females than males.
        "In summary, arrest increases are not always related to an increase in crime.  They can reflect positive policy changes."


1999 14-17 population = 15,654,000 (U.S. Census Bureau: Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2000)
1982 14-17 population = 15,057,000 (                                   "                                             "                      )

Total juvenile offenses in 14-17 age group 1999*=  1,082,022  therefore offenses are 6.91% of 14-17 pop.**
Total juvenile offenses in 14-17 age group 1982*=  935,012    therefore   offenses are 5.97% of pop.**

1999 total juvenile population = 70,199,000  (U.S. Census Bureau: Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2000)
1982 total juvenile population =  62,813,000  (                                   "                                             "                      )

Total juvenile offenses 1999 =  1,082,022    Therefore offenses are 1.54136%  or 1541/100,000
Total juvenile offenses 1982  = 1,436,915    Therefore offenses are 2.2876%    or 2,288/100,000


1999 14-17 population = 15,654,000 (U.S. Census Bureau: Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2000)
1979 14-17 population =     16,275,000  (                                   "                                             "       1980)

Total juvenile offenses in 14-17 age group 1999*=  1,082,022  therefore offenses are 6.91% of 14-17 pop.**
Total juvenile offenses in 14-17 age group 1979*=   1,481,326 therefore offenses are  9.10% of14-17 pop.**

1999 total juvenile population = 70,199,000  (U.S. Census Bureau: Statistical Abstract of the United States: 2000)
1979 total juvenile population = 62,571,000 (                                   "                                             "            1980)

Total juvenile offenses 1999 =  1,082,022    Therefore offenses are 1.54136%  or 1,541 / 100,000
Total juvenile offenses 1979  =  2,143,369   Therefore offenses are 3.4132%    or 3,413 / 100,000

The per capita juvenile crime rate was more than double in 1979 what it was in 1999

*since UCR lumps 13-14 age group together, I used half the 13-14 number for the 14 y.o. offenders
**since some juvenile offenders surely offended multiple times during this year, this number is a maximum

qa277a.gif  This figure shows that the per capita murder rate was somewhat higher among juveniles in 1980 than 1999

qa280.gif  Higher property crime among juveniles in 1980

qa276a.gif  Little appreciable diff 1980-1999

  qa273.gif RS truncated his graph at 1996


  qa267.gif  RS truncated his graph at 1994

  qa265.gif  RS truncated at 1994





  qa144.gif  If juvenile domestic violence is really skyrocketing, shouln't domestic homicide by juveniles also show an upward trend?  Homicide involves a dead body and is thus less amenable to vaguaries of reportage and definitions.

qa141.gif  RS truncates at 94




Randy Cox sent this useful link


      Juvenile murder rate at 33-year low

            By MICHAEL J. SNIFFEN
            The Associated Press

            WASHINGTON -- A six-year decline in murders by teenagers brought
            the 1999 homicide arrest rate for juveniles down 68 percent from its 1993
            peak to the lowest level since 1966, the Justice Department reported

            The arrest rate of juveniles for four major violent crimes -- murder, rape,
            robbery and aggravated assault -- plunged 36 percent from its 1994 peak
            to 1999, reaching the lowest point since 1988, according to FBI
            statistics cited in a report by Justice's Office of Juvenile Justice and
            Delinquency Prevention.

            Experts say the decline of crack cocaine and the violent gangs that
            peddled it, combined with big city police crackdowns on illegal guns and
            expanded after-school crime-prevention programs, have turned around
            the juvenile crime wave that pushed murder arrest rates for youths, age
            10 to 17, up from 1987 to a peak in 1993.

            That violent youth-crime wave of the late
            1980s and early 1990s was overwhelmingly
            concentrated among black teens in the
            nation's largest cities, and the murder
            declines have been greatest among them.

            But there also were sharp declines in
            murders by white male teens, said James
            Alan Fox, a Northeastern University criminal
            justice professor who has combined several data sets to produce more
            detailed reports than the Justice study.

            Fox's data estimating actual offense rates rather than merely arrest
            rates showed that the rate of murders committed by blacks ages 14 to
            17 fell from 244.1 per 100,000 youths in 1993 to 67.3 in 1999. The white
            teen-age murder rate fell from 21.8 per 100,000 in 1993 to 10.2 in 1999,
            Fox said.

            "The reduced level of violent crime shows how the power of prevention,
            when combined with constructive intervention and strengthened juvenile
            justice systems that hold every offender accountable, makes our
            communities safer," Attorney General Janet Reno said.

            But polls show that word of the juvenile crime turnaround has been slow
            to sink in among the public. In 1998, 62 percent of adults, polled by
            Beldon, Russonello and Stewart for the Building Blocks for Youth
            Initiative in the government's largest crime survey, believed youth crime
            was on the increase, at a time when it had dropped for five years to a
            25-year low.

            "America's kid are committing fewer crimes than they have in three
            decades," said Vincent Schiraldi of the Justice Policy Institute, which
            advocates alternatives to incarceration. "But this does not seem to be
            making it into the public consciousness."

            Highly publicized school killings, such as the Columbine High School
            killing in which 15 people died in 1999, overwhelmed news of a decline in
            school violence.

            A 1999 NBC-Wall Street Journal poll found 71 percent thought it "likely"
            a school shooting could occur in their community during a year in which
            there was just a one in 2 million chance of being killed in an American

            "We see lifeless bodies in school yards around country, and they are
            much more powerful in shaping public attitudes than the lifeless
            statistics we see in our newspapers," Fox said.

            The Justice report also showed substantial drops from the peak years to
            1999 in the juvenile arrest rates for the other crimes tracked by the FBI:

            • Rape by juveniles was down 31 percent from 1991 to 1999, to the
            lowest level since 1980.

            • Robbery was down 53 percent from 1994, to the lowest since 1980.

            • Aggravated assault was down 24 percent from 1994, to the lowest
            since 1989.

            • Burglary down 60 percent from 1980.

            • Larceny-theft down 23 percent from 1997.

            • Auto theft down 52 percent from 1990.

            In addition, the juvenile arrest rate for weapons crimes fell by 39 percent
            from 1993, to its lowest since 1988.

            Two juvenile arrest rates that had climbed during most of the 1990s
            began to drop recently: Drug abuse violations fell 13 percent and curfew
            and loitering violations dropped 17 percent from 1997 to 1999.

            Fox and others have said noted that the demand for crack cocaine
            abated during the mid-1990s and the gangs that peddled it either
            eliminated their competition or made peace with it.

            "The police also played a role," Fox said. "They targeted gang
            members, traced illegal guns and aggressively confiscated guns,
            particularly in New York, Boston and Los Angeles where the biggest
            drops were."

            A booming economy helped too. "Not because a teen-ager would give
            up the profits from crack for a McDonald's salary, but because it meant
            the cities had money to spend on policing, crime prevention, recreation
            and after-school programs," Fox said.

            Increased imprisonment was a smaller factor, Fox said, because even
            though more juveniles were sentenced to prison during the decade they
            still were locked up less often and for much less time than adult

(Cincinnati)E N Q U I R E R   L O C A L   N E W S   C O V E R A G E

                                   Sunday, August 13, 2000

                      Police detective's book says spank kids

                           Author believes crimes would lessen

                  The Associated Press

                          BEREA, Ohio — A police detective thinks that if more
                  parents spanked their children there would be less juvenile

                          Robert Surgenor has published a book saying that
                  proper child-raising requires parents to spank children who
                  misbehave, inflicting pain without injury.

                          He says children today don't respect their parents
                  because they don't fear them. Punishments such as time-outs
                  and grounding are fine, but when those don't work, hearing a
                  parent pull off a belt is effective, Mr. Surgenor said.

                          “Juvenile crime is exploding,” he told the Cleveland Plain
                  Dealer. He cited FBI statistics that show domestic violence
                  offenses committed by children increased 348 percent
                  between 1983 and 1997 — more than double the rate of
                  increase for adults.

                          Mr. Surgenor couldn't find anyone to publish his book No
                  Fear: A Police Officer's Perspective. So he took out a second
                  mortgage on his house to publish it through Providence House
                  Publishers. The Tennessee-based company specializes in
                  regional, historical, inspirational and theological titles.

                          Berea Police Chief Harry Bernhardt said the department
                  does not take an official position on the book.

                          Cuyahoga County Juvenile Court Judge Peter Sikora
                  disagrees with Mr. Surgenor's juvenile crime statistics. He said
                  the number of crimes committed by children is dropping
                  nationally and locally — evidenced by a 20 percent drop in
                  suburban juvenile crime and a 17 percent drop in Cleveland
                  from 1998 to 1999.

                          Mr. Sikora wouldn't say whether spanking played a role
                  in children committing crimes.

                          “A common characteristic of a law breaker is a lack of
                  discipline and a lack of respect,” he told The Plain Dealer. “Do
                  I believe that spanking is the missing ingredient? I don't
                  believe I can make a blanket statement like that.”

                          Case Western Reserve University professor Sylvia Rimm
                  said all the research she's seen shows the more children are
                  spanked, the more likely they are to become aggressive. Ms.
                  Rimm is a professor of psychiatry and pediatrics at Case
                  Western's medical school and is director of the Cleveland Clin
                  ic's Westlake Family Achievement Clinic.

                          Mr. Surgenor said his opinions are based on a career of
                  seeing children who weren't spanked become lawbreakers.

                          “The Bible reinforces what I say,” he said. “"The rod and
                  reproof give wisdom but a child left to himself bringeth his
                  mother to shame.'

                          “Society, unfortunately, has geared parents to think
                  they can't touch their children.”

                          Mr. Surgenor's eldest son, Robert Jr. says he grew up
                  knowing his father would swat him if he didn't behave. Mr.
                  Surgenor has five children, ages 16 to 26.

                          “He taught me respect,” said 26-year-old Robert
                  Surgenor Jr., a Cuyahoga County sheriff's deputy. “I think he
                  made me a better person.”

p. 114

"I have just read your emailed reply to the Center for More Effective Discipline.  I am appalled.  Your communication reinforces the adage that a little biblical knowledge can be a dangerous thing.

"No matter how much prooftexting one employs (and your mumbo-jumbo takes the prize), there's no basis for hitting kids in the life and ministry of Jesus of Nazareth.  When you engage in such a convoluted scriptural exercise, you'r really taking a cultural practice and dressing it up in religious garb.  It cannot stand the test of one simple Bible verse: "Let the children come to me and do not hinder them for to such belongs the kingdom of heaven."

"Your view of human nature in general, and children in particular, is tragic.  Children are inherently evil, according to your view, and have to be beaten into control with pain and fear.  Such a distorted view of God's most precious creatures hardly coincides with the Jesus I know!

"It frightens me to know that you are a police officer.  With your distorted view of children, your obvious need for control, and your wholehearted defense of violence under the guise of Christian teaching, I hate to think of the consequences for the community where you live.

"I will hold you in prayer: that you may yet discover the magnificent gift God has given us in children; may learn to deal with your need to dominate; and may give up your attachment to violence (another false god).  I'll pray also that, as a police officer, you are far removed from the children I know and love.

"Yours truly, The Rev. Thomas E. Sagendorf."
Bexley UMC  http://www.bexleyumc.org/index.html