What Is Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor?

Contributing to the delinquency of a minor means helping or making someone under 18 years old do something seen as unruly, or behaving in a way that makes the minor do something unruly, notes the Ohio Revised Code. Someone guarding the child (whether a parent or other custodian) and contributing to that child's delinquency is typically charged with a misdemeanor and can result in jail time and a fine.

One common example of this crime is giving minors alcohol, although the laws on this differ by state and may exclude giving them alcohol for religious, educational or medical reasons, states FindLaw. Each state has its own regulations on whether there the person must know the minor's age to be guilty of the crime.