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NCJ Number: 211675 Find in a Library
Title: Waiver of Juveniles to Criminal Court: Judicial Discretion and Racial Disparity
Journal: Justice Policy Journal  Volume:2  Issue:1  Dated:2005
Author(s): Jodi K. Olson
Date Published: 2005
Page Count: 20
Sponsoring Agency: Ctr on Juvenile and Criminal Justice
San Francisco, CA 94103
Sale Source: Ctr on Juvenile and Criminal Justice
40 Boardman Place
San Francisco, CA 94103
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Literature Review; Report (Study/Research)
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This paper summarizes the literature on racial disparity in the transfer of juveniles to criminal court, prosecutorial discretion in the waiver process, and the results of waiving juveniles to adult court.
Abstract: The paper first presents a brief history of juvenile justice, noting that the premise underlying the creation of the juvenile justice system in America was that of helping children who were delinquent through the delivery of treatment services to juveniles and their families. This is followed by a review of the waiver process and its impact on the goals and objectives of juvenile justice. A section of the paper then discusses judicial and prosecutorial discretion in the waiver process, with attention to various types of waivers. The next section addresses racial disparity in juvenile justice processing. It concludes that although racial disparity is evident in the process of waiving juveniles to adult court, it also exists at other decision points in the juvenile justice system as well. Other consequences of waiver are also discussed, notably the recidivism rate for juveniles processed in an adult court. One study compared waived youths with a matched control group of juveniles retained in the juvenile justice system. The recidivism rates were greater for waived juveniles by every measure of recidivism used. Thus, the waiver process is pervaded by racial disparity and virtually unlimited levels of discretion with few precise standards for waiver decisionmaking. Future research should focus on the effectiveness and consequences of transferring juveniles to adult court and also examine the criteria used to determine whether or not a youth is amenable to treatment and poses an extraordinary danger to the community. 30 references
Main Term(s): Juvenile court waiver
Index Term(s): Corrections effectiveness; Judicial discretion; Juvenile justice policies; Juvenile Recidivism; Racial discrimination
Note: Downloaded November 10, 2005.
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