Governor Ron DeSantis and Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) Secretary Simone Marstiller today announced that the number of juvenile arrests declined eight percent in Fiscal Year 2018-2019 according to the latest delinquency report released by the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice. Juvenile arrests are also down 27 percent in the last five years, marking the lowest juvenile arrest level in Florida in 44 years.
“The continued decline in juvenile arrests demonstrates our dedication to keeping Florida safe and keeping our young people out of the juvenile justice system through effective prevention and early intervention services,” said Governor DeSantis. “We will continue to work with our law enforcement and community partners to uphold public safety and provide the services necessary to ensure all Florida youth are afforded the opportunity to be successful.”
The latest delinquency data shows a decrease of five percent in overall felony arrests, a 15 percent decrease in murder/manslaughter, a 17 percent decrease in burglary arrests and a 12 percent decrease in auto theft arrests. Overall misdemeanor offenses also decreased by 12 percent during the last fiscal year.
In recent years, the reform efforts of Florida’s juvenile justice system have focused heavily on early intervention and prevention services in addition to providing enhanced services to those youth who find themselves in the deeper end of the juvenile justice system.
“With the continued support of Governor DeSantis and the Florida Legislature, DJJ will continue to allocate its resources into preventing and diverting youth away from our juvenile justice system while investing in services that meet a youth’s behavioral and mental health needs,” said DJJ Secretary Marstiller. “This decrease in juvenile arrests is encouraging, and we remain committed to providing the best outcomes for Florida’s youth while placing the safety of our communities at the forefront of everything we do.”
To view the full report, click HERE.