Historically youths haven’t enjoyed their Statuses as childhoods and adolescence as we understands them nowadays where during childhood the needs nurturing and guidance for their development process. Early History To The Seven lies J justice Earlier in the 1 6th and 17th centuries youngsters where considered as property or as miniature adults. By a young age of 5 children had same responsibilities as adults and also subject to similar criminal sanctions as adults. A different view of the young emerged by the 16th and 17th century where childhood was considered as an important period in life.
Youths were not considered as miniatures adults or property anymore but as moral and reductive members of society whom they needs guidance. American colonists brought these ideas through Europe responding to violators of social and legal rules. Through the colonial period the economic production and mechanism was the family where social control was in action. Primarily, it was the responsibility of the family to neglect the moral training and discipline of the young. During this period it was important to teach and employ children a trade to earn a living.
One of the trades for children of middle and upper classes was the apprenticeship system and for the poor was the binding out system. These were difficult children and who needed supervision was ‘bound over’ to master for core. Under this system masters were not required to teach trades to children, resulting that boys worked farming tasks and girls worked as housewives. Religion was another force shopping the social life so religious beliefs dominated ideas about appropriate behavior.
Concerns between church and state were equal and immoral value was also unlawful and punishable by authorities, such as fines and whipping. Breaking the violations of community norms were punishable and remembered by the use of stocks and the pillory. Early 1 ass’s life began to change to the results of economic and social developments. Family-based system was giving a factory-based system where fathers and children were leaving home to go for factory work. This change developed control between family members especially the behavior of children.
Children were subject to the same punishments as adults. (Faust & Birmingham, 1979; Plant, 1977). In New York 1925 it was established the first institution for Youths to prevent social problems such as poverty, drunkenness and crime; including those crimes committed by children. The idea of this institution was that children loud be educated, skill trained, hard working and apprenticeships leading to produce members of the society. Children were placed for indeterminable period or until reaching 18 or 21 . Various problems emerged because juveniles were mixed with adults.
Criminals and non criminals were also mixed producing overcrowding failing to supply education and training using harsh physical punishment and exploitive use of the clients for gaining money. Defining Delinquency In Chicago 1899 after failing to deal with problem youths the juvenile court was established. Delinquency was increasing and was in need for new interventions. These interventions focused on the ability to change youthful behavior, educate and train the child. Helping the youths didn’t restrict juvenile Court to intervene that committed crime, but could go through when a youth needed assistance in any situation.
Caring, training and guidance were first and foremost the idea of the juvenile court. The court had to deal with youths who committed crime and intervene when the youth needed assistance. Late 1800 children were treated differently and separately from adults. It had to be set at which age a child acts criminal behavior. In general juveniles pose difficult problems to society. Among other concerns juveniles should be handled differently from adults. It has to be distinguished the behavior between and adult and a juvenile on how they can be charged.
Many points out that the same criminal behavior must be charged in the adult system. Definitions of such criminal laws points out terms that break go against the criminal laws of the State, which if committed by an adult it would be considered a crime (Rogers and Mays, 1987; 566). It has been developed a system of social control to deal with juvenile behavior. The juvenile justice system works different than the adult ‘criminal justice system’. Juvenile Justice System set different statements about deviant behavior and works independently of the adult system but it does not mean that they don’t overlap between both systems.
In fact there are similarities in both operation system and individuals argue that the differences are a bit more than semantic exercises. It was at this time that the juvenile justice system could intervene in specific juvenile offenses, such as ‘status offenses’. Status offenses are actions that are applicable to persons of certain ‘statuses. These are any acts committed by juvenile who brings attention to juvenile courts but to considered as status offenses are smoking, drinking, fighting, swearing, running away from home, leniency, and being disrespectful to parents and curfew violations.
In other words any other actions that are allowed for adults. Various jurisdictions refer many youths who engage in status offense are ‘incorrigible’, ‘disobedient’, beyond parental control and other similar terms. Truants may be more inclined to become chronic offenders and engage in more serious, possible criminal, behaviors. Such statutes are vague with the interpretation of what’s not acceptable as criminal behaviors. Legal definition varies from place to another. Example of this is the District of Columbia, where 38 states and federal courts identify juvenile less than 18 years of age.
Another 15 states consider juveniles those aged 15 or under and other 8 states define it at the age of 17. Some states set it at a lower age, which ranges from 6 years to 10. In some states at the age of 10, children can be considered as adults and processed by the adult criminal justice system. Another age consideration deals with the ‘waiver or transfer’ of youths to adult jurisdiction. Varying the age limit means that in one location youths can e subject to juvenile statues while in others jurisdiction may be handed as adults. An Overview of the Prosecution The juvenile process generally starts with the police.
The Public starts the juvenile justice system and police officers represent the citizen’s complaints. The Informal system operates outside the official agencies and much illegal behavior is handled by neighbors, teachers and business owners. Thus most delinquent juvenile are handled in the formal system when those people around them decided to inform the police or juvenile court. The police move forward to represent the juvenile justice system. When police officers encounter a juvenile committee an illegal act must take little justification and decide whether or not a youth is taken into custody.
An arrest is a legal control to answer for criminal acts. (Rush, 1990:16). When a juvenile is suspected, the police will than refer the juvenile into the juvenile court. In 1992, about 30% juveniles where handled within the police department and then released; 47% were referred to criminal courts and 63% were referred to juvenile court. The court now has to make decisions: 1. Whether or not the juvenile is put in jail. 2. Whether or not a juvenile is charged. 3. Whether to find the youth a delinquent. 4. How to dispose of the petition.
Juvenile court actors such as probation officers, defense attorneys, prosecutors and judges are involved in important decisions, which correspond to the adult court decisions of bail or jail, the filling of a formal charge against dismissal, determination of guilt by plea or by trail and sentencing. Court personnel play important roles in the decisions of the juvenile suspect but the judge is the primary decision maker. From now on the juvenile points to the critical decision process; detention, intake, waiver, adjudication and disposition.
Models of Decisions The Detention The Juvenile Court personnel must take a decision whether a juvenile is kept in custody or allow them to go home waiting for further court decisions. The detention is the same part in juvenile court of the bail decision in adult court and affects the freedom of the youth and consequently compares the sentencing decision. Detention children may stay for a period of times, maybe a longer period than those who are sent youth prisons determined to be delinquent. Workers and probationers may have several options such as leave the youth to return home is the most decision preferred in several dates.
Another alternative is placing a youth in the juvenile referring to it as the severe detention. This involves a locked facility sheltering from 10 or more youths waiting for more court procedures or transferred to a state correctional facility. Another option for some youths is the non secure detention. This is for those who committed less serious crimes. Youths who does not threat themselves and the community? Also some youngsters can be housed in small homes that are not locked or not locked as a severe detention. Juveniles who are non secured homes can go to school. Studies show that over 18. 0 youths were kept public juvenile facilities in 1 991 (Maguire, Pastors & Flanagan 1 993: 576). 95% were in short term facilities but 3% were in public long term facilities. To keep a child in juvenile facility costs around $81 a day (Allen-Hagen, 1991). The number of detained delinquent cases increased by 20% between 1986 and 1 990 but the number of detained Status offence cases declined by 38%. (Butts & Pea, 1993). The Intake Another step in the juvenile justice process is the intake decision making decision to further process Of the cases proportioned to the filing decision in adult court.
In particular cases, a probation officer, a prosecutor or both decides whether or not to file a petition of delinquency, status offense, neglect and abuse. The doctrine parents patria orders this approach because its orientation showed that the probation officer must consider the best interest of the child also the legal aspects of the case. The probation has to examine the welfare of the youth and legal demands of the police and victim and then resolve the case into these considerations.
The intake officer which is a frequent decision is to obtain from filing a petition proofing delinquency r status offense instead of resolving the case against the child. This is so called the informal adjustment which occurs by 25% of the time (McCarthy, AAA) and has been part of the juvenile court since introduced. The Prosecutor’s Role The prosecutor has to approve the petition against a child taken by the probation officer which ensures that a legal officer checked the legal criteria for a proper authorized petition, the legal wording and enough evidence for establishing petition, finding the offender guilty.
The prosecutor has to check that the offense occurred in court’s jurisdiction and at the time of offense the out was of proper age. Because of important legal criteria and fast growing of pun dive juveniles some jurisdictions take only the prosecution intake decision instead of the probation officers. Such models abandoned the parents patria because they are more consistence in legal views of juvenile courts. The action shows a break with juvenile court thinking and practice and becomes very close to adult process and its retributive emphasis.
The Waiver Decision The ‘waived or also called transfer decision is the most critical for youths appealed to juvenile court. Some states allow than generally older offenders omitting serious crimes are transferred to adult courts. This makes the youth subject to adult penalties such as lengthy imprisonment opposed to the juvenile court. This results an adult criminal record where the juvenile becomes published and may be difficult to find future opportunities for employment. The Juvenile Court keeps the child records in strict confidential.
Recently another waiver decisions in several states is prosecutorial transfer. The prosecutor have to show that the juvenile committed an offense and if the juvenile reaches certain age or offense criteria he/she are send to the criminal court. In some states the waiver process is simplified so that cases transferred to criminal court for trial becomes easier. Frequent use of waiver alternatives towards juvenile’s offender is becoming more frequent. Between 1986 and 1990 transferred cases increased by 65% (Butts and Poe, 1993).
Adjudication and Disposition Next Step after filing Of petitions are adjudication and disposition, for those juvenile who are not transferred to criminal court. In these decisions a judge decides whether if there is enough evidence for petition and then determines what to do where such decision are equivalent to adult court like the plea, Arial and sentencing. Baker, 1 991; Prescott, 1981 argues that such juvenile sessions are hurried reflecting self-interests of parties involved instead of the best interest of the child. Conclusion Most juvenile justice is facing different concerns and debates.