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'Violent crime suspects are getting younger and younger': BRPD works with groups to curb juvenile crime

3 weeks 1 day 19 hours ago Friday, May 24 2024 May 24, 2024 May 24, 2024 6:21 PM May 24, 2024 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE - Summer vacation has begun, and that leaves teenagers and kids looking for something to do.

Last year, the Baton Rouge Police Department arrested nine juveniles for attempted murder or homicide. In just the first five months of 2024, they've arrested 11 juveniles for attempted murder. Police Chief T.J. Morse says that's why they're teaming up with other organizations to make sure kids stay occupied. 

"We're seeing kind of a trend that worries us, is this trend of violent crime suspects getting younger and younger," Morse said. "We definitely want to have partnerships with people in the community to give the youth something to do this summer."

Morse says that in the summer months they often see spikes in crimes among juveniles, such as burglaries and break-ins.  

"Summer naps get increased, more screen time gets increased, but then also parents are off at work and they're worried about what their kids are getting into. Youth can leave the house and start hanging out with the wrong types of people and be involved in some of our crimes."

“We got a lot of things in place to make sure that we do our best where it doesn't," Morse said. A lot of overtime programs, a lot of special activities that we're doing, special patrols, programs to put more boots on the ground."

BRPD will be hosting its own summer camps that will allow kids to stay active, keep up with school work, and also get a look at what being a police officer is like. 

They're not the only ones, as the BREC parks will also have different camps for children. 

Sarah Soltau with BREC Parks says it's a great way to keep kids engaged and active.

"We offer anything from five to 14, so we even have summer camps for teens and kinda tweens," said Saltau. "It gets you involved in different things, and meeting new people. You develop new skills, you develop new relationships. It's just a lot of fun because you get to do so many things you don't get to do on a normal basis."

BRPD has teamed with YMCA of the Capital Area, BREC Parks, Boys & Girls Club Metro LA, EBR Parish Library, 100 Black Men - Metro Baton Rouge, and Boys Scouts of America - Istrouma Area Council. Click each organization's name for links to their sites.

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