After School: Still the Prime Time for Juvenile Crime in Maine
Afterschool Fights Crime in Maine
The more than 5,000 law enforcement leaders around the nation who are members of Fight Crime: Invest in Kids, have long known that the hours immediately after school lets out, when parents are likely not available to supervise, are the prime time for juvenile crime. Over the past 20 years, law enforcement leaders across the country have relied on high-quality afterschool programs to provide supportive, stable, and enriching environments with caring adults that keep children and youth out of trouble and safe, while supporting their academic success, and social and emotional development.
The Prime Time for Juvenile Crime in Maine
In Maine, juvenile crime peaks between 2-6 p.m. on school days, with about 29 percent of all juvenile crime on those days occurring during the hours following the last school bell.
Program Highlight: Police Activities League, Auburn
The Auburn Police Department looked at four years of crime data and found that twenty three percent of all crimes committed by youth offenders and twenty eight percent of all youth victims of crime in Auburn took place within an area of less than half a square mile. In an effort to transform these statistics and provide positive experiences for at-risk youth, the Auburn Police Department established the Auburn Police Activities League (PAL).
In the spring of 2013, the Auburn PAL Center opened, right at the heart of the half-square mile area identified by crime data. The Center, which has been entirely refurbished, provides educational and athletic activities for kids after school and during the summer, not to mention positive interaction with police officers.
As a police chief, I support high-quality afterschool programming because of their many proven outcomes for at-risk youth. I want to see these kids learning to cook or being tutored in math, not in the back of my squad car.
Fight Crime: Invest in Kids member Jason Moen, Auburn Chief of Police
For three summers now, the Center has offered free breakfast & lunch each morning (in partnership with the Auburn School Department), as well as fun and informative programs for our kids. With support from the Auburn School Department, the Science through Cooking program is comprised of students from Franklin-Merrill Hill Alternative School. They work under the supervision of Community Resource Officer and Chef Tom Poulin.
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