The Effects Of Illicit Drugs On The Nation 's Rate Of Violent Crime

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Since the mid 1990s there has been a significant and continued reduction in the nation 's rate of violent crime. Not long ago, the picture was not so positive. The use of illicit drugs began to be more widespread, and governments at all levels responded by strengthening enforcement forces against drug law violators, attempting to block illegal drugs at the borders, working with other countries to take down the criminal organizations that produce and distribute drugs, and increasing efforts to reduce demand for drugs (Dept. of Justice, 2005). In addition, serious crimes, including violent ones, committed by juveniles began to increase at a fast pace. By the late 1980s, violent crime committed by juveniles had reached epidemic proportions. This was tied in part to an increasing market for cocaine and especially its offshoot, crack, in the 1980s and by the easy access to weapons. As crime worsened, the police made more arrests; lawmakers began passing harsher laws; the number of cases prosecuted by the courts increased; and the number of people in prisons or jails, or under probation and parole supervision, reached new highs. Over time, there were changes in policies concerning crime and criminals, the resources invested in fighting crime, and the bodies that we rely upon to prevent crime and carry out the law.
Among the changes was the Safe Streets Act that Congress passed in 1968. This event marked an important step toward defining the Federal Government 's responsibility

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