6 J. Juv. L. 1 (1982)
Legislative Reforms to Reduce Parental Child Abductions

handle is hein.journals/jjuvl6 and id is 5 raw text is: THE JOURNAL OF JUVENILE LAW
VOLUME 6                            1982                          NUMBER 1
LEGISLATIVE REFORMS TO
REDUCE PARENTAL CHILD
ABDUCTIONS
BY MICHAEL W. AGOPIAN*
AND
GRETCHEN L. ANDERSON**
I.  INTRODUCTION
The increase in the number of marriages which end in divorce is
perhaps the most dramatic evidence of the change in the structure of
the American family.' Although divorce has become commonplace,
* Dr. Agopian is Assistant Professor in Administration of Justice at California Lu-
theran College and Director of the Child Stealing Research Center. He is the author of the
pioneering book PARENTAL CHILD-STEALING--a two year study of child snatching cases
from the Los Angeles County District Attorney's Office.
Dr. Agopian was a consultant in drafting the Federal Parental Kidnaping Prevention
Act which was recently signed into law. He also was involved in the creation of California's
parental child stealing laws.
His publications on crime appear in numerous books and journals and include the areas
of forcible rape, drug treatment, and innovations in court processing. He has taught at a
number of colleges and has held a variety of positions in government including Program
Evaluator for the California Department of Corrections and Director of Research at the
Open Door Drug Clinic. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Southern California
in 1980.
** Dr. Anderson is Assistant Professor, School of Public Administration, at the Uni-
versity of Southern California. She is former Director of the Los Angeles Semester Pro-
grams at the University of Southern California.
After obtaining her B.A. in Sociology from Purdue University, she furthered her studies
in Sociology at the University of California, Santa Barbara, where she completed her M.A.
in 1969. Dr. Anderson received her Ph.D. in Urban Affairs in 1975 from the University of
Southern California.
Dr. Anderson is author of the forthcoming book on space management, MAKE ROOM
FOR ME.
1. In 1979, 1,181,000 divorces were granted in the United States, the highest national
divorce total ever observed. The 1979 figure was 4.5 percent above that for the preceeding
year (1,130,000) and nearly 3 times the number reported 20 years ago (395,000 in 1959). The
national divorce rate per 1,000 total population was 5.4 in 1979, compared with 5.2 for 1978,

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