When I write about crime, I consider the age of the killer. I’m shocked most by crimes committed by the elderly and the young. Some years ago, I wrote an article about Teen Killers and argued about the appropriate form of punishment. So far, I have not ventured into writing a novel where my killer is a teen. I’m not sure I ever will. I find it too disturbing. I don’t believe they should escape the harsh punishment for their crime, but executing a teen seems as appalling as the original crime. Do they deserve lenience? A chance to rehabilitate? Or are they born bad?
A piece from my essay states: evidence exists to show that, while the juvenile system and the three-strikes law may assist in rehabilitating minor juvenile delinquents and less serious offenders, the system has failed in the attempt to rehabilitate juveniles who commit brutal crimes, such as rape and murder. Some juveniles are evil and sadistic in nature, and intentionally kill. These juveniles must be held accountable for the severity of their crimes in the same way as adults.
It’s a tough subject. I’d like to know what you think.