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in 1961. The Executive Director of the President's Crime Commission was in here the other day, and he said it ought to be $250 million instead of $25 million.
Well, that caused a lot of hair to stand on end, particularly in view of the fiscal conditon of the Government, the war in Vietnam, and so forth. But this is a problem we have to wrestle with. And I think you could be most helpful to me, to the committee we will all read your testimony-you see $25 million won't give much to Fairfax County. For that matter $250 million would not give too much, if you spread it around.
But if you were to make a specific recommendation as to how much money you could usefully spend in Fairfax County to combat juvenile delinquency, both in prevention, and then after there has been some transgression of law in which a youngster might turn out bad, in attempting to rehabilitate him, or once he has turned out bad, and you have to put him away somewhere, and you need some sort of confinement-how much money do you think you could spend to good advantage, without wasting it, in Fairfax County? Or would you want to even hazard a guess?
Colonel DURRER. Mr. Chairman, this would be strictly a guess. Knowing the county, knowing the geographical area, where the population is located, we would need, just to start with, what I had said in my statement, about recreational areas, close to $10 million. This is just off the top of my head.
Senator CLARK. I appreciate your willingness to help us out. I know it would have to be a guess to some extent. And again, let us see if you and I together can work out-if you had $10 million-what you would use it for. Remember, you are dealing with the juvenile delinquency problem from the very start-let us get room for the kids to dance, let us get some recreation centers. But let us also remember that some of these kids are going to turn out bad anyway. Then we have to work out juvenile court, probation, parole, eventually possible confinement -all those things.
So maybe you and your assistants-we are not going to hold you to it-we understand this is just off the top of your head-maybe you can tick off the areas where you would undertake to spend that $10 million.
Colonel DURRER. Let me ask Lieutenant Wilson to comment on that. He is closer to the problem than I am.
Senator CLARK. Happy to hear from you, Lieutenant.
Lieutenant WILSON. Mr. Chairman, first I would think we should delve into the educational process for police officers in regard to the apprehension of those persons that have committed the criminal offenses that Chief Durrer has spoken of in his statement to the committee.
There are educational institutions throughout the country to better inform the police officer as to the change of the attitude of young people, as to what we would be looking for.
Second, I believe that we cannot exclude the custodial facilities-
Lieutenant WILSON. Yes, sir; we do.
Senator CLARK. Is part of that low salaries?
Lieutenant WILSON. I believe Colonel Durrer could answer that much better than I could, sir.
Colonel DURRER. I think basically, sir, this is a problem.
I am from a great big city, Philadelphia, with a lot of problems which I am sure are different to a great extent than many in Fairfax County. But we are having real trouble recruiting young men for the police department. We raised salaries quite a bit. We have a big racial problem. I guess you have a racial problem, too.
Do you find any difficulty-well-do you have a requirement that your policemen should have a high school education?"
Lieutenant WILSON. Yes, sir; we do.
Senator CLARK. And do you find many high school graduates who you can persuade to go into police work?
Lieutenant WILSON. To perusade them to go into police work?
Colonel DURRER. We require a high school education. We do have people apply who do not have the high school equivalency.
We are having trouble persuading all people, all young people, to go into police work.
Senator CLARK. How young do you take them?
Colonel DURRER. Twenty-one years old, sir. This is State law. And as you said, sir, it is not a local problem, as far as Fairfax County is concerned. It is nationwide. And as I see it, I believe the basic problem is the low salaries. Once we get a police officer, once we get him to the department, get him hired, we can keep him. Our turnover rate is very low.
Senator CLARK. Kind of a cynical comment on my part-but we did not have any trouble back in the depression, did we? Maybe that is what we need to get a good police force.
Go ahead, Lieutenant.
Lieutenant WILSON. Secondly we cannot eliminate, nor do we feel we can carry the responsibilities of combating juvenile delinquency by ourselves in the law enforcement field.
We have to keep in mind the custodial facilities that we are also lacking in Fairfax County to these young persons that are apprehended for crimes-what we can do through the field of rehabilitation. Senator CLARK. Are your correctional institutions overcrowded? Lieutenant WILSON. We have four in the State of Virginia, and they are in the middle part of the State. We only have one temporary facility in the northern Virginia area.
Colonel DURRER. That is very overcrowded.
Senator CLARK. And I suppose you get a kickback, don't you, from the ones at the State level saying "Don't send us any more people, we have all we can handle."
Lieutenant WILSON. We do have this problem-our courts have this problem.
Senator CLARK. It is a real problem of getting bricks and mortar in which you can retain these people when you find you have to do it; is that right?
Lieutenant WILSON. Yes, sir.
Senator CLARK. Go ahead.
Lieutenant WILSON. Also we would have the recreational problem that Colonel Durrer has mentioned. This could possibly-the physical
facilities would be our first phase. And then after the physical facilities, we would need people to staff the facilities-whether it be the roving leader through the recreation department, which we have discussed at length, or some other means we do not know at this time. Senator CLARK. And there again, you have a recruitment problem, don't you, to get recreational personnel, adequately skilled, to handle these programs. Is that true?
Lieutenant WILSON. I would think so; yes, sir.
Senator CLARK. How about your private institutions, your community chest, your health and welfare councils-don't they-the Boy Scouts, for example-don't they run any recreational programs which take some of the load off?
Lieutenant WILSON. This I could no answer, sir.
Senator CLARK. Do you happen to know, Colonel, for example, in Fairfax County are there any playgrounds, recreational areas, operated by private, nonprofit agencies?
Colonel DURRER. Yes; we do have those. The health and welfare council of the county operates a teen center in Vienna. They are at the present time having some difficulty, I think, mainly on supervision
of the center.
Senator CLARK. That is again a recruitment problem, I guess-holding personnel when you get them.
Colonel DURRER. Yes, sir.
Senator CLARK. OK, Lieutenant. Go ahead.
Lieutenant WILSON. Well, these are just a few of the things I have mentioned here where I believe financial assistance could be of great need in the combating of juvenile delinquency. The educational process of the police officers, I think, is quite important.
Senator CLARK. How about the schools? Are they doing a good job in Fairfax County?
Lieutenant WILSON. I think we have an excellent school system. I believe the school system should certainly keep abreast of the times, and that their educational process should possibly develop into more than the law, as to what would be expected of them. Some of our young people are lacking parental guidance and authority in the home.
Senator CLARK. Do you have a good many broken families in the county where there is no man in the house, and the woman is trying to raise a large family?
Lieutenant WILSON. I cannot say about the broken families. I can say the percentage of youngsters we come in contact with for law violations, the percentage is quite high where broken families do exist. Senator CLARK. Where there is nobody except the mother, there is no father in the home.
Lieutenant WILSON. That is correct, sir.
Senator CLARK. Do you have any coordination with the school system so they will help point out to you the school dropouts they think might get into trouble, or do you have to wait for a short in
Colonel DURRER. Mr. Chairman-Captain Eike has been working with our school people on this problem and other related problems. Captain EIKE. Your question again, Senator, please.
Senator CLARK. Do you have any coordination between your police department and the school system, the superintendent of schools, by
which they would indicate to you school dropouts who they think are disciplinary problems, that might get into trouble, and keep an eye on these people, or is that just asking too much?
Captain EIKE. No, sir. Our juvenile officers work very closely with the guidance people in our intermediate schools and high schools, and keep abreast of the troublemakers in the schools. We have the Fairfax County Youth Council as well which is made up of SCA representatives of the 17 high schools, interested adult organizations, such as the federation of PTA's, federation of citizens association, chamber of commerce, police department, recreation, and the governing body of the county, the board of supervisors.
We have monthly meetings where this is discussed, and we impose on the SCA's to take a lead in bringing to our attention problems in various high schools, and what we can do to help them solve the problems.
Senator CLARK. You speak of juvenile officers. How many do you have?
Captain EIKE. We have seven, sir.
Senator CLARK. Pretty good. What is the population of the county? Captain EIKE. 400,000 people.
Senator CLARK. Well, let us go back to Lieutenant Wilson.
Maybe you are not the right one, but the next subject I want to touch on is your relationship to the court system, and what kind of a juvenile court system have you got in the county, and what is its relationship to the police department?
Lieutenant WILSON. I feel that the relationship between the police department and the Fairfax County Juvenile Domestic Relations Court is outstanding.
This is something that we strive to keep this relationship in good existence.
One other thing that I was going to mention some time ago to you was also I think that funds could be-if funds could be available for the various agencies, including the police department, the juvenile courts, the welfare agencies, recreation departments, to create better liaison-this could be done possibly through meetings or what-haveyou. It seems like each agency is limited fundwise and personnel wise to give of the personnel. And I believe this could bridge the gap of communication. And I think this is quite important in this.
Senator CLARK. Would that mean a larger staff for you gentlemen? Lieutenant WILSON. Yes, it would be helpful if we had a larger staff. Senator CLARK. What is the salary or the average salary of the juvenile officer now?
Colonel DURRER. $7,500-depending on length of service-$7,500. Senator CLARK. Is the turnover rapid?
Colonel DURRER. No, sir.
Senator CLARK. They stay with you?
Colonel DURRER. Our turnover rate is very low, as I said.
Senator CLARK. Let us get back to the juvenile court system.
Can you describe briefly for the record-you have a juvenile judge as part of the regular court system-could you just explain briefly what the juvenile court system is in Fairfax County?
Lieutenant WILSON. Yes, sir. At this time we have one full-time juvenile judge. He is staffed with approximately 16 probation coun
selors. Their workload usually ranges from 40 to 50 cases per month that they carry, and when I say cases they carry, each one of these cases would be a youngster that would be under the court's supervision. Senator CLARK. That is pretty low on a national average. You still think it is too high?
Lieutenant WILSON. Yes, sir, I do, from working with them, and discussing some of the problems that they have.
Senator CLARK. What do you think would be an efficient, good, and nevertheless economical caseload?
Lieutenant WILSON. I think 25, from my experience.
Senator CLARK. What kind of supervision, just in general terms, do these kids get that have gotten into trouble?
Lieutenant WILSON. Limitations are set up by the court as to their activities the hours they must be in off the street, the places they can go, required to go to school if under the age of 16, weekly sessions with their counselor to see how their progress is going, activities together this is to a limited degree-activities together because of lack of time of the probation counselor.
We do have a good setup. I feel our recidivism rate is fairly low in Fairfax County.
Senator CLARK. Do you have any percentage figure on it?
Senator CLARK. Generally speaking, are you reasonably contentwe can never be content, of course are you reasonably content with the way the system is working in terms of rehabilitating these kids, or do you think it is just getting worse every year?
Lieutenant WILSON. I believe that the State's theory on rehabilitation is good, to a point. I question this theory when we get a young person who has been apprehended for auto larceny, and is presently under the court supervision, to be apprehended the second and third time, and may be the second time he would get a suspended commitment to one of our State institutions, and the third time he would get another suspended commitment.
I question this theory very much.
Senator CLARK. You think they are not tough enough?
Lieutenant WILSON. In certain cases this is correct, sir-I do not feel they are tough enough.
Senator CLARK. What are the principal misdemeanors or felonies with which you deal? You mentioned theft of automobiles. Is that one of the more chronic ones?
Lieutenant WILSON. This is on the increase, as are burglaries, where young people have been apprehended. I think this holds true throughout the country. Our greatest percentage of young people that would be involved in violations would be the petty thievery, and the vandalism which we are suffering a great deal of at this time.
Senator CLARK. Are there many crimes of violence, knifings, muggings, assault and battery?
Lieutenant WILSON. No, sir; this is limited in our area. We are quite proud of this.
Senator CLARK. With respect to the population of Fairfax County, what percentage of it is Negro, roughly?
Colonel DURRER. Between 3 and 4 percent, sir.
Senator CLARK. Very low.
Colonel DURRER. Yes, sir; very low.