Panel Paper: Estimating the Effect of Raise the Age on Recidivism: Evidence from Massachusetts

Friday, November 8, 2019
Plaza Building: Lobby Level, Director's Row E (Sheraton Denver Downtown)

*Names in bold indicate Presenter

Charles E. Loeffler, University of Pennsylvania and Anthony Braga, Northeastern University

A number of local U.S. jurisdictions have broadly expanded their juvenile justice systems as part of the Raise the Age (RTA) movement. These expansions have resulted in the shifting of adolescents and young adults from the adult criminal justice system into the juvenile justice system. Based in part upon findings from the juvenile transfer literature, policymakers have predicted reductions in juvenile crime post-expansion. Existing evaluations have reported mixed evidence for these crime reductions. The present paper contextualizes these findings and reports preliminary results from an ongoing evaluation of RTA in Massachusetts. Implications for additional expansionary and hybrid jurisdictional policies are also discussed.