A new study finds youth who have sexually offended are unlikely to re-offend, and should be taken off long-term sex offender registries. The findings appear in a report released this week by the Illinois Juvenile Justice Commission.
According to the report, the number of youth arrested for sexually offending in Illinois is small and appears to be declining. 232 youth in Illinois were arrested for a sexual offense in 2010, down from 434 in 2004. Youth detained or incarcerated for sex offenses are a very small percentage of youth in county detention centers and state juvenile prisons.
The report finds Illinois is one of nine states not excluding the youngest juveniles from broad registry requirements. In the rest of the country, 19 other states require registry for some juveniles but give courts some flexibility to determine which juveniles must register, and 11 states and the District of Columbia do not register juveniles unless they have been tried and convicted as adults.
The report recommends Illinois repeal the registry, restrictions, and notification requirements applied to youth found guilty of sexual offenses.