From coverage provided by the news media juveniles are perceived as committing more violence, and popular media also conveys the impression that their violence is becoming more callous and gratuitous. Many juvenile killings appear to take place without any rational cause or purpose. It is this latter characteristic, hardened malice, that has caused many to question the concept of protecting and rehabilitating youth--upon which the juvenile justice system has historically been based. This section will attempt to reconcile the available data with these common perceptions.
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