Rampant violence in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras is being blamed for a huge increase in the number of unaccompanied children being held in American detention centers after sneaking into the country. From the LAT:
The number of unaccompanied migrant children in U.S. detention centers grew nearly 50%, from 6,854 in fiscal 2011 to more than 10,000 in the nine-month period ended June 30, according to federal statistics cited in the report, titled "Forced From Home: The Lost Boys and Girls of Central America." ...
In interviews conducted with 151 children in federal holding facilities, nearly 80% told researchers that violence was the main reason they set out for the U.S. by themselves
The article also notes that these kids "have no right to a court-appointed attorney," immediately before noting that a good attorney is their only hope for getting asylum. So that's depressing.