Black Kids Tried As Adults More Than Any Other Group

As we know, this country heavily criminalizes Black bodies at unprecedented rates. But have we thought about how this system is also affecting Black children?

WNYC found data obtained from the New Jersey Administrative Office of the Court. It reveals that more than 692 minors were tried as adults in the past five years. The youngest offenders were 14 years old when they committed their crimes, and almost 90 percent of them are Black or Latino. Black kids are charged as adults more than any other ethnic group.


(Clarisa Diaz, WNYC Data News Team)

The WNYC Data News Team went through state records of every person who currently resides in a New Jersey prison today, and isolated those who were minors on the date they committed their crime. Here’s what they found:

  • At least 152 inmates are still in prison today for crimes they committed as kids in the past five years
  • 93 percent of them are Black or Latino
  • The most common crime they committed was robbery
  • 20 percent of them have sentences of 10 or more years
  • Two are female inmates

Unfortunately, this information makes a bleak connection to the school-to-prison pipeline. A few years ago, a study from the Department of Education showed that Black students of all ages are suspended and expelled at three times the rate of White children.