skip navigation

PUBLICATIONS

Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.

 

NCJ Number: 64747 Find in a Library
Title: JUVENILES IN ADULT COURTS - UNRESOLVED AMBIVALENCE (FROM ADOLESCENT PSYCHIATRY, VOLUME 7 - DEVELOPMENTAL AND CLINICAL STUDIES, 1979, BY SHERMAN C FEINSTEIN AND PETER L GIOVACCHINI)
Author(s): C P MALMQUIST
Corporate Author: University of Chicago Press
United States of America
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 13
Sponsoring Agency: University of Chicago Press
Chicago, IL 60637
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE CRITERIA BY WHICH JUVENILE DELINQUENTS ARE WAIVED TO ADULT CRIMINAL COURTS ARE CONTRADICTORY AND ARBITRARY.
Abstract: WITH JUVENILE OFFENSES, THE KEY ISSUE IS WHETHER THE JUVENILE WILL REMAIN WITHIN THE JUVENILE COURT SYSTEM OR WHETHER HE WILL BE TRIED IN AN ADULT CRIMINAL COURT. THE REGULATIONS, AGE LIMITS, AND TIME LIMITS WITHIN THE JUDICIAL PROCESS WITH REGARD TO WAIVING A JUVENILE TO AN ADULT'S COURT VARY WIDELY FROM STATE TO STATE. THE CRITERIA FOR WAIVER--THOUGH MORE UNIFORM IN THEIR PHRASEOLOGY--ARE SO VAGUE THAT THEY CAN BE CONSTRUED AS APPLYING TO ALMOST ANY TYPE OF MAJOR OFFENSE; THE CRITERIA INCLUDE THE RECIDIVISM OF THE OFFENDER, THE LACK OF SUITABLE TREATMENT FACILITIES FOR THE OFFENDER WITHIN THE JUVENILE SYSTEM, AND THE DETERMINATION THAT A JUVENILE IS A THREAT TO PUBLIC SAFETY. THE AMBIVALENCE OF THE CRITERIA--I.E., THAT OFFENDERS MAY BE WAIVED FOR SUCH OPPOSING REASONS AS TREATMENT OR THE SECURITY OF SOCIETY--DATES TO THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A SEPARATE JUVENILE COURT SYSTEM AT THE END OF THE 19TH CENTURY. EVEN THEN, IT WAS NEVER CLEARLY ESTABLISHED WHETHER THE NEWLY CREATED COURT SYSTEM SERVED THE GOALS OF REHABILITATION, GENERAL DETERRENCE, PUNISHMENT, PROTECTION OF PUBLIC SAFETY, OR RETRIBUTION. DUE TO THIS AMBIVALENCE, UNCLARIFIED AND FREQUENTLY ARBITRARY CRITERIA CONTINUE TO GUIDE THE JUDGE'S DECISION, AND 17 PERCENT OF JUDGES ADMIT THAT PUBLIC OPINION CONCERNING A CASE IS A MAJOR UNSPOKEN FACTOR GOVERNING THE WAIVER. EITHER THE JUVENILE JURISDICTION SHOULD BE ELIMINATED ENTIRELY FOR SERIOUS OFFENSES, WHICH AT LEAST SERVES CLARITY, OR THE JUVENILE SYSTEM OF JUSTICE SHOULD BE ACCEPTED AS HAVING A MISSION FOR JUVENILES, EVEN WHEN THEIR CONDUCT INVOLVES SERIOUS OFFENSES. AT LEAST THESE CONTRARY ALTERNATIVES HAVE THE MERIT OF AVOIDING THE ASSERTION THAT RANDOMIZED DISCRETION SERVES JUSTICE. THE ARTICLE INCLUDES A BIBLIOGRAPHY. (SAJ)
Index Term(s): Juvenile adjudication; Juvenile court waiver; Juvenile courts; Laws and Statutes; Offense classification
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=64747

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.