Credits: DAVID BLOOM/EDMONTON SUN/QMI AGENCY
In 2010-11, Youth courts completed 52,900 cases involving about 178,000 charges. This caseload was down 7% from the previous year.
However, the average length of a court case has increased dramatically over the last decade, from a median of 79 days in 2000 to 113 days in 2012, which could partly explain the decline.
The number of completed youth court cases dropped in every province except Manitoba. Nova Scotia and P.E.I. saw the biggest declines, at 15% and 13%, respectively.
Teen boys are the most likely Canadian youth to face charges, the most common of which are theft (15%) and breaking and entering (8%).
In 60% of cases, the kids facing charges were between 16 and 17 years old, and boys made up three quarters of all cases.
Fewer judges are sending kids to jail. Of all the kids found guilty of crimes, 16% were sentenced to custody, down 29% from a decade ago.