Juvenile Justice And The Juvenile Court System Essay

1365 Words Dec 7th, 2016 6 Pages
Historically, children over 14 were presumptively culpable for their crimes. In the late 19th century, juvenile justice reformers advocated for the creation of a separate judicial system that emphasized rehabilitation rather than punishment, and judicial discretion rather than procedural formality. This movement was driven by concerns that juvenile offenders were different than adult offenders, and might benefit from alternative forms of judicial processing (Tanenhaus 2004, 2002). The juvenile court system spread rapidly throughout the United States. Growing fears of juvenile crime and skepticism about rehabilitation led many states to reconsider the thought of processing serious juvenile offenders in what appeared to be a lenient juvenile justice system (Feld, 1999). During this period, states moved more and more juveniles into the adult justice system through three different legislative changes. First, they created statutes that required or permitted juvenile judges to transfer serious adolescent offenders into adult court. Second, a number of states created direct file procedures, which empowered prosecutors to charge serious juvenile offenders in adult court without judicial approval. And third, a number of states lowered the age of majority for juvenile court for some or all offenses. These changes precipitated a significant rate of reoffending for juvenile offenders, transferring tens of thousands of cases each year to the adult criminal justice system (Rubin, 2003).…

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