Glossary: R


The stage of the juvenile justice and criminal justice systems in which youth are released from institutional confinement and rejoin the community. See also “Aftercare.”

Reasonable Suspicion

The circumstances that legally permit police to stop and question a child. An officer must be able to articulate specific facts that led him to infer that the youth was engaged in criminal activity, and a judge decides whether such suspicion was reasonable.

Recidivism Rate

The rate at which youth who have been previously adjudicated delinquent re-offend, as measured by subsequent arrests, prosecutions, and/or placement/incarceration. Lowered recidivism rates are often used to justify investment in certain programs and services for delinquent offenders.


Payments that a judge may order a youth to make either to a particular crime victim or to a crime victims’ fund. Restitution is part of a youth’s disposition or sentence and is generally based on the amount of harm inflicted on the victim.


Certain practices used to restrict a youth’s movement for security purposes in secure confinement settings, as well as in some courts and even some schools. The term “restraints” includes physical restraints in which one or more persons physically restrain the arms, legs, head, and/or torso of a youth, or hold a youth to the ground or against a wall. It also refers to mechanical restraints such as handcuffs, shackles, and belly chains, and chemical restraints such as mace or pepper spray.

Right to a Jury Trial

A due process protection that, in most states, is provided to adults in criminal court but denied to youth accused of delinquent acts in juvenile court proceedings. School-to-Prison Pipeline: A term that generally refers to school discipline, attendance, and safety policies that act as gateways for youth to enter the juvenile and criminal justice systems. Youth who get in trouble in school – or get in trouble for missing school – are sometimes referred to the juvenile justice system rather than being disciplined in school or receiving services in their schools or communities. See also “Zero Tolerance.”