Date of Conferral





Criminal Justice


Gregory M. Koehle


After undergoing a form of rehabilitation (i.e., youth detention centers in Georgia), statistics show that juveniles have a 65% chance of reoffending within 3 years after being released. The Georgia Juvenile Justice System’s $300 million annual budget raises concerns about the acts of juvenile recidivism. The purpose of this research was to understand why juveniles reoffend after being in a juvenile detention center in Atlanta, Georgia. The conceptual framework for this study was centered on the alternative to youth detention centers. The research question addressed factors that led juvenile delinquents to reoffend after receiving an alternative treatment. This study had a phenomenological research design. The objective of this design was to understand the “lived” experiences from the participants, which included former juvenile delinquents and current juvenile probation officers. Data from both sets of participants were collected through individual interviews and analyzed for emergent themes, which was to help understand the reasons that juveniles reoffended after being in a juvenile detention center. The findings of this research indicated that more avenues and resources (finances, time, alternatives/options, staff, etc.) are needed to become more effective in the juveniles’ lives. Interviewees indicated that the effort that has been put in place needs enhancements. This research could help to provide a deeper understanding of what is needed to address the issue of juvenile recidivism in Atlanta, Georgia.