At the same time, these cases are a signal that children with behavioral disorders who do not grow up in a favorable environment need to be worked with, Ruks said.
"Such cases are recurrent, but overall, compared year by year with what is happening in the country and what is happening in other countries, the crime rate is stable and has fallen well in recent years. Compared to 10-20 years ago, the situation is much better," Ruks noted, adding that "crime is a social phenomenon and it would be utopian to think that crimes can be eradicated altogether."
Ruks emphasized that in the not-so-distant past, the number of crimes committed by minors and juveniles was much higher. "The serious crimes plus/minus are in similar numbers, some years there are none. These are isolated loud cases," Ruks noted.
Criminal liability shall apply from 14 years of age, but the legislator has provided for compulsory measures of a correctional nature. The strictest of these is probation monitoring, also imposing different types of bans and specialist help. A different age threshold would not change anything, according to Ruk, because very young children can also take someone's life without realizing what they're doing.
"The question then is the perception of a person as to why he has formed such, the public attitudes, the environment. It's continuous work in families, schools, keeping track of a child, working with psychologists, often related to the availability of a specific specialist service, and funding. These things definitely need to be improved," Ruks said.
Commenting on the brawl in Mežciems, Ruks said there was no submission to the police or known children involved in it. But the eyewitness video shows a lot of adults around, and no one intervenes. "This is the collective attitude of the public because police cannot arrive at the scene within a minute," the State Police Chief noted.