Albany Times Union: Reason for Drop in Youth Arrests Hard to Pin Down

Albany Times Union: Reason for Drop in Youth Arrests Hard to Pin Down

Over the last five years the number of police stops and arrests involving Capital Region youths has fallen more than 45 percent, according to state data. It's a stunning drop -- but one without a clear single reason, say law enforcement and juvenile justice system professionals. Several factors are likely in play, including an overall drop in crime in the country, changes in the drug trade, increased use of alternatives to incarceration and changes in youth culture, said Jeffrey Butts, director of the Research and Evaluation Center at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. “I’ve been doing this for a long time, tracking trends, and something definitely feels different than it did 20 years ago,” Butts said.

Twin Cities Pioneer Press: Treating Violence like a Contagious Disease? Some Think this Might be the Way

Twin Cities Pioneer Press: Treating Violence like a Contagious Disease? Some Think this Might be the Way

As Jeffrey Butts, director of the John Jay College of Criminal Justice research and evaluation center in New York City, noted four years ago, “the public health approach of [Cure Violence] CV currently merits the label ‘promising’ rather than ‘effective.’” “CV, however, offers something to communities that other well-known violence reduction models cannot,” he added. “It is potentially very cost-efficient, and it places less demand on the political and administrative resources of law enforcement and the larger criminal justice system. "

CBS 13 WGME: Despite Recent Maine School Threats, Kids are Actually Bringing Fewer Weapons to School

CBS 13 WGME: Despite Recent Maine School Threats, Kids are Actually Bringing Fewer Weapons to School

The decline in possession of weapons at school and in the prevalence of weapon-related threats in schools also holds true for overall juvenile crime, according to Jeffrey Butts, director of the Research and Evaluation Center at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York City. “One popular theory is that the drug trade was much more dangerous 30 years ago. Kids that lived in neighborhoods with active drug sales going on often felt that they needed to have a gun on them to protect themselves,” he said. “The daily threat from street-corner drug sales has gone way down.”

St. Louis Post Dispatch: Milwaukee’s Cure Violence Program–Mixed Reviews and Lots of Hope

St. Louis Post Dispatch: Milwaukee’s Cure Violence Program–Mixed Reviews and Lots of Hope

“I’m a big fan. I think [Cure Violence is] a very valuable asset for a community to have,” said Jeffrey Butts, director of the Research Evaluation Center at New York's John Jay College of Criminal Justice, who has observed Cure Violence programs in New York, New Orleans and Philadelphia. “But it’s definitely possible to do it poorly."

Brooklyn Daily Eagle: Can you put a price on a life taken by gun violence? That’s the $36M question.

Brooklyn Daily Eagle: Can you put a price on a life taken by gun violence? That’s the $36M question.

“People have tried to put a number on the cost of a death. If someone is shot — even injured — much less killed, there are policing costs,” Butts told the Brooklyn Eagle. “Someone has to show up to process the scene. There are prison costs for the shooter, and then all the other costs for family who have a person shot and or killed. There’s lifelong trauma, loss of income. You can actually estimate the total cost.”

Brooklyn Daily Eagle: More New Yorkers Serving Life in Prison are from Brooklyn than Anywhere Else in the City. Reformers are Calling for Relief.

Brooklyn Daily Eagle: More New Yorkers Serving Life in Prison are from Brooklyn than Anywhere Else in the City. Reformers are Calling for Relief.

It’s not possible to pinpoint exactly why Brooklyn has more people incarcerated with these long sentences using borough-by-borough numbers alone, said Jeffrey Butts, director of John Jay College of Criminal Justice’s Research and Evaluation Center. In order to determine why Brooklynites are serving so many life and virtual life sentences, Butts said, it would be necessary to control for specific crimes to then see if there is a pattern in sentencing.

After Mass Shootings, Trump says Prosecutions for Firearms Offenses hit Record in 2018

After Mass Shootings, Trump says Prosecutions for Firearms Offenses hit Record in 2018

...the vast majority of gun crimes are handled by state courts, not federal courts, said Jeffrey A. Butts, director of the Research & Evaluation Center at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. So Trump is talking about a small piece of the issue.

Albuquerque Journal—ABQ Area Homicides Down Slightly, but Concerns Remain

Albuquerque Journal—ABQ Area Homicides Down Slightly, but Concerns Remain

And while the drop in crime is welcome news to Albuquerque residents, Jeffrey Butts, director of the Research and Evaluation Center of John Jay College of Criminal Justice, warns that Albuquerque police and local leaders should be cautious and not take the decrease for granted.

Nashville Tennessean—Violent Crime on the Rise as Nashville Grows, but East Nashville Bucks the Trend

Nashville Tennessean—Violent Crime on the Rise as Nashville Grows, but East Nashville Bucks the Trend

Another explanation could be an affordable housing crisis exacerbated by Nashville's booming economy, said Jeffrey Butts, the director of the Research & Evaluation Center at John Jay College of Criminal Justice. This can be particularly true for some neighborhoods. “The social stresses of shared housing and multifamily housing increase the chances that adolescents become frustrated and alienated," Butts said, creating an environment conducive to more crime.

Miami Herald—Lockup guard slugged a skinny kid. Prosecutors say it’s justified. Here’s the video.

Miami Herald—Lockup guard slugged a skinny kid. Prosecutors say it’s justified. Here’s the video.

An expert in juvenile justice policy and research said that prosecutors' justification for declining to press charges suggests an office-wide bias in favor of officers. "The memorandum from the state attorney uses language revealing the intent of the office, which is to minimize the violent nature of the attack," said Jeffrey Butts, who is director of the Research and Evaluation Center at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York.

City Limits—Program Keeping Convicted Youths Closer to Home Enjoys Success, Faces Cuts

City Limits—Program Keeping Convicted Youths Closer to Home Enjoys Success, Faces Cuts

That longstanding approach was problematic at best, according to Jeffrey Butts, director of the Research and Evaluation Center at John Jay College. “We’re setting ourselves up for failure when we take a young person who is 14- or 15-years-old, send them hours away from their family, and break all their ties to their communities,” he says.

Gotham Gazette—Why Does Crime Keep Falling in New York City?

Gotham Gazette—Why Does Crime Keep Falling in New York City?

The John Jay College of Criminal Justice Research and Evaluation Center found that between 2014 and 2016, there was a 50 percent decrease in gun injuries in East New York, Brooklyn and a 37 percent reduction in the South Bronx, two communities where Cure Violence has been implemented.