In America’s society, there are an estimated 1.2 million violent crimes committed every year. Adults are not the only individuals that are committing violent crimes. Juveniles are estimated to be involved in twenty-five percent of all violent crimes. Along with these crimes comes the decision on whether these juveniles should be tried as minors or adults, which has created an immense controversy around the United States. Certain juveniles are tried as adults because they must be held accountable for their actions, it brings justice to their victims, and because those individuals have a moral sense.
Upon reading Schindler’s article, “Draw from Juvenile Justice System’s Strengths for Better Approaches for Young Adults,” I was shocked to discover so many alarming statistics about the young adults in the U.S. criminal justice system. For instance, “[y]oung adults make up roughly 1 in 5 people incarcerated in U.S. prisons and jails. Half of them are people of color, and are victims of crime twice the rate of others” (Schindler, 2016). The large amount of youth present in the justice system struck me as a problem; therefore, effective solutions are needed to address this problem regarding juvenile justice. Schindler suggested that safer communities need to be created so that fewer people end up being imprisoned. He then added that “the response
According to statistics from the U.S. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, “there were seventy-eight youth courts in 1994, and there are now approximately 1,400 youth courts in forty-nine states” ("Fact Sheet: Youth Courts", 1) Comparative, California only had two Teen Courts in 1991 but has since grown to have over sixty different programs. This community-based rehabilitation program has succeeded in hundreds of communities across the country on the grounds that they offer the juvenile offender the opportunity to learn how the criminal justice system works, as well as their rights and responsibilities that are coupled with the system. Recent studies show that teen court participation produces a cost-effective program, accountability in young offenders, better community connections, youth influencing youth, and also prevents further delinquent acts ("Fact Sheet: Youth Courts", 2). With the assistance of restorative justice sentencing and harm reduction alternatives to the juvenile justice system, communities around the United States are taking a practical and beneficial approach to the traditional juvenile justice
A Bureau of Justice Statistics conducted a study in 40 of the nation’s largest urban communities. “It was found that an estimated 7,100 juvenile defendants were charged with felonies in adult criminal court in 1998. Of these 40 county criminal courts, juveniles were 64% more likely than adults to be charged with a violent felony. These juvenile defendants were generally treated as serious offenders, as 52% did not receive pretrial release, 63% were convicted of a felony, and 43% of those convicted received a prison sentence. States have expanded the mechanisms by which juveniles can be charged in criminal courts. In 1998, statutory exclusion was the most common method (42%) used to charge juveniles defendants compared to the more traditional use of juvenile waiver (24%). In the 40 counties in 1998, 62% of the juvenile felony defendants were black, 20% were white, 16% were Hispanic, and almost 2% were of another race” (“Bureau of Justice Statistics”).As time goes on, crime rates of youths
The juvenile court system is a fixture of the justice system with many moving parts. Each component and member of the court system are essential in carrying out their common goal. By helping operate a complex system built to rehabilitate juveniles, these people, and the programs they run, prevent juveniles from reoffending, benefit them, and help them towards the path of becoming a productive member of society.
The Juvenile Justice Delinquency Prevention and Protection Act (JJDPA) was established in 1974 and was the first federal law that dealt comprehensively with juvenile delinquency to improve the juvenile justice system and support state and local efforts at delinquency prevention. This paper will assess the JJDPA and summarize its purpose and implementation and enforcement. Next, there will be a discussion of the historical context of the policy; followed by a focus of the latent consequences. Finally there will be a vignette as to how this Act has affected a person or family as well as personal reflection toward the policy.
The juvenile justice system has made numerous of ethical issues when managing juvenile offenders. The issue with the juvenile justice system is the laws and rules that govern it. It has led to years of controversial debate over the ethical dilemmas of the juvenile corrections system, and how they work with youth offenders. The number of minors entering the juvenile justice system is increasing every month. The reasons why the juvenile justice system faces ethical dilemmas is important and needs to be addressed: (1) a vast proportion of juveniles are being tried and prosecuted as adults; (2) the psychological maturation of the juvenile to fully comprehend the justice system; and (3) the factors that contribute to minorities being adjudicated in the juvenile justice system are more likely than White offenders. These three ethical issues that are rising in the juvenile justice system will be further examined.
The book provides various opposing viewpoints regarding the cause of juvenile crime and how the criminal justice system should treat juvenile offenders. Each argument highlights the main risk factors for juvenile crime. For example, gang plays a large part of juvenile violence. Some teens become gang members because they feel a sense of belonging and protection. Therefore, the community should focus on building strong relationship and positive role-models. Other critics claim adult prison is not appropriate for juvenile offenders and should find better alternatives.
There are indication that most criminals have a juvenile records in the US, indicating that crime manifests from a tender age. Therefore, to reverse the incidence of crime, it follows that the best strategy is to reduce the criminal orientation in the juvenile offenders as opposed to hardening them and preparing them for criminal careers. The case of the Crossroads Juvenile Center demonstrates the willingness of the juvenile justice systems to make these changes on the children.
Those in favor of trying juveniles as adults believe that it deters and minimizes crimes being committing by all minors. That trying juveniles as adults will bring the greatest good to the most amount of people. According to an article posted by the American Bar Association by Nicole Scialabba, “the increase in laws that allow more juveniles to be prosecuted in adult court rather than juvenile court was intended to serve as a deterrent for rising youth violent crime.” It is no secret that youth commit crimes in our society. In 2014, law enforcement agencies in the U.S. made an estimated 1 million arrests of persons under age 18 (Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention). It is debated that juveniles are committing more serious and violent crimes because the youth think they can get off easy and take advantage of the system put in place. Those in favor of youth offenders being tried as adults believe that as juveniles are punished to the full extent of the law, future youth offender will think twice before committing a criminal act. In support of this, seventy-five percent of the transferred juveniles interviewed by Redding and Fuller (2004) felt that their experiences in the adult criminal justice system had taught them the serious consequences of committing crimes. As one juvenile explained, “[Being tried as an adult] showed me it’s not a game anymore. Before, I thought that since I’m a juvenile I could do just about anything and just get 6 months if I got
America has the most overpopulated prisons in the world and that is because we would rather put a person (or in this case child) in prison for life than address the root of the situation. Data analyzed by Ashley Nellis, Ph.D., Research Analyst with The Sentencing Project, a project that advocates for the reform of justice policies and tackles the disparities in race and gender in the criminal sphere, reported, “ Survey research in the past 10 years consistently shows a majority of the respondents to favor trying juveniles in adult court for serious felonies, with roughly 75% of the typical adults surveyed believing that violent juvenile offenders should be treated as adults” (Neils) this attitude towards juvenile criminals is insidious to America’s youth, and does nothing to lower the crime rate. The real question is not when should juveniles receive life sentences, but how can we prevent it? How can we reform the Juvenile Court System in a way that actually addresses the crimes (and the needs) of Juvenile criminals so that they can be punished, rehabilitated, and reintroduced to society to actually love their lives? It is not until we see the bigger picture that we can make this
For generations, the argument whether juveniles should be waived to adult courts or not has been a prevalent one in our society. Some agree that waiving the juveniles to adult courts will reduce their recidivism rate, due to the harsh sentences and a lifelong record next to their name. However, in light of the argument these individuals fail to consider that the level of maturity of the juvenile is not the same as an adult. The cognitive development of the juvenile is still in process when they are underage, causing them to act impulsively without thinking about the consequences of their actions. In this paper, I will provide information as to why waiving juveniles to adult courts only causes their recidivism rate to increase rather
In an age where juvenile crime has escalated from simple truancy to more serious crimes such as mass school shootings some would agree it is time to abolish juvenile courts or modify the system at the very least. Because of the seriousness of juvenile crime in this day and age, most states have already lowered the age limit for juvenile court jurisdiction from 17 years and are prosecuting more children as adults depending of the seriousness of the crime. Some criminal justice and child welfare scholars argue that younger children do not have the mental capability or experience to weigh the consequence of committing a crime and much less understand the implications of a criminal record in their future. Furthermore, they note that most juveniles grow out of criminal behavior as they mature out of the system and in
During early history, juvenile offenders we're treated the same as adults. Juveniles would be arrested, taking into custody and imprisoned in the equivalent facilities as adults. Back then punishments we’re the go, as for now, we have rehabilitation and treatments. “parens patriae” also known as the State, was established, they believed it would resolved the offenses being committed by juveniles. Parens patriae gave the state the right to make decisions for the child in replace of their parents. Juvenile justice faces an uncertain future. Despite this fact, it continues to operate under the “parens patriae” philosophy upon which it was built. The system now incorporate elements of due process and adapts to the changing demands placed on it.
Siegel, L. &. (1988). Juvenile Delinquency: Theory, Practice and Law (3rd ed.). United States of America: West Publishing Company.