Babes in Gaol
The Mail’s intrepid reporter Clive White is assigned to investigate the growing problem of Yob Culture and society’s failure to deal with it. He traces the short life of John Holland from a ten year old excludee from school to become a fifteen year old drug dealer facing his first time in prison. From a boy who led his gang into orgies of destruction in the local parks to a lad who would destroy anyone who got in his way.
Clive discovers that a child, like John, in care or from a poor home was more likely to be punished for a criime at an early age than those from more stable backgrounds. These children were being punished by magistrates, for something that was so trivial, it deserved nothing more than a telling off or “a clip round the ear from their dad,” now this child had a criminal record at the age of 10 which would affect them for the rest of their lives.
Clive’s investigation shows how John Holland at an early age learned to manipulate other children who had been excluded from school into doing his bidding, and by the time he was 15, he had built up an almost invincible empire in which he controlled the Drug Scene in Standford, aided by several ruthless individuals who would do anything to protect the income John was shelling out.
Clive traces the crimes John and his associates committed, the punishments they received, the way they were dealt with by the courts and how they behaved afterwards. He compares the present situation in the youth courts with those in Victorian times and finds that little has changed.
Clive realises the failues of the present system and offers alternatives to the criminalisation of the very young, especially as many of these children grow out of this behaviour when their lives become more stable.
Babes in Gaol the newest novel by Edward Evans will be coming soon.
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