Why are kids willing to risk their futures like this?
We’re hearing reports about minors stealing cars all over the country, and the problem is getting worse. Off the top of my head, I recall writing about a kid as young as 11, or the age of a 5th grader, assuming they’re in school, stealing a car. Though the use of social media, car theft rings are reaching these kids more easily, and even making the prospect of lifting a car look glamourous. Recently, New Jersey officials held a press conference to address the issue.
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“The adults running the operation know that the juvenile is going to be treated with the kid gloves,” Acting Essex County Prosecutor Theodore N. Stephens said.
He’s referring to the sentencing process, and even the likelihood of serious charges being made against a minor, and the younger they are, they easier the system goes on them.
“This is a big business. These are corporations,” said state Sen. Richard Codey, D-Essex. Codey went on to outline that these cars end up not only being shipped over seas to be stripped, but are also frequently used in the commission of other crimes, like drive-by shootings.
Another point they made, which is beating a dead horse at this point, is that most cars were stolen while unlocked, with the key fob inside. However, there have been cases where the criminals have broken into a home to get the keys to steal the car.
The adults using these kids are paying them as much as $1000 per vehicle, which is quite a bit to a kid who doesn’t have any foresight about how this could ruin their future. Of all the solutions floated during the press conference, and pretty much anytime this issue is discussed, nothing was mentioned about the parents of these children.