(NORTH PERTH, ON) – Parents are being reminded to speak to children and youth about the risks of participating in social media challenges.
On December 4 2021, at approximately 8:00 p.m., the Perth County Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) received a report from a member of the public who was victim to one of the latest social media trends. The victim was at their home on Brock Street West, in Listowel, when someone kicked in the front door. The suspects then fled the scene on foot.
The three suspects were located in the area, and were identified as two 13-year-olds and a 14-year-old, all residents of North Perth. It is likely that the youths were participating in one of the most recent social media challenges, which encourages kids to kick in the door of a stranger’s house.
“What parents and youth need to realize is that Mischief is a criminal offence. But more than that, it causes unnecessary stress for members of our community.” – A/Inspector Wendy Burrow, Perth County OPP
In this case, the youths were referred to a Diversion program, an extrajudicial measure under the Youth Criminal Justice Act. These extrajudicial measures provide meaningful consequences, such as requiring the young person to repair the harm done to the victim. They also allow early intervention with young people and provide the opportunity for the broader community to play an important role in developing community-based responses to youth crime.