Locking up juveniles may plant seeds of more crime

“Locking up juveniles may plant seeds of more crime by Mary Schmich

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Joe Doyle was still a grad student at the University of Chicago in the late 1990s when he went to watch the proceedings in Cook County’s juvenile court.

He sat there while inexperienced lawyers argued over the fate of young offenders, mostly young black men. He witnessed judges who had to instruct those inexperienced lawyers on procedure at the same time that they, the judges, had to render life-altering decisions.

To incarcerate or not to incarcerate?

Sitting in the busy court, watching judges face that question, Doyle wondered what would happen to those kids in 10 years.

Would being locked up hurt or help?

Now an economics professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management, Doyle recently released research that suggests a partial answer to the question.