Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Comments

Submitted to the College of Graduate Studies Bridgewater State University Bridgewater, Massachusetts In partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of Masters of Science In Criminal Justice

Degree Program

Criminal Justice

Degree Type

Master of Science in Criminal Justice


African Americans are overrepresented in the criminal justice system and known to experience disadvantages in society because of their race, ethnicity and sometimes gender. With determination to understand the barriers that hinder African Americans from equal opportunities; this thesis explores the disparities against Black boys in the American criminal justice system. This thesis uses a qualitative study approach in which I analyze three historical cases that happened in different eras, George Stinney Jr. (1944), Central Park Five (1989); and Tamir Rice (2014). Each case will demonstrate the denial of Black childhood and Black boys being seen as adults, mistreated and feared by the American criminal justice system. The term adultification can be applied to all three cases in which these Black boys experienced racial bias, being wrongfully convicted and unjustly killed. These denials of due process, mistreatments and executions will illustrate the systematic issues for the Black boys that have been and are still a racial/social issue in America.


Dr. Michael King (Chair)

Dr. Emily Brissette (Member)

Dr. Feodor Gostjev (Member)