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NCJ Number: 65316 Find in a Library
Title: PROTECTING JUVENILE WITNESSES
Journal: JOURNAL OF FAMILY LAW  Volume:17  Issue:3  Dated:(1978-79)  Pages:439-455
Author(s): R J GAGE
Corporate Author: University of Louisville
School of Law
United States of America
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 17
Sponsoring Agency: University of Louisville
Louisville, KY 40208
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: ATTORNEYS MUST BE AWARE OF THEIR ETHICAL AND LEGAL OBLIGATIONS WHEN INTERVIEWING JUVENILE WITNESSES, AND GREATER JUVENILE PROTECTION MUST BE PROVIDED.
Abstract: A REVIEW OF THE CODE OF PROFESSIONAL RESPONSIBILITY AND OBLIGATIONS EMANATING FROM COMMON LAW POINTS TOWARD THE NEED FOR EVEN GREATER JUVENILE THAN ADULTS PROTECTION WHEN BEING INTERVIEWED BY AN ATTORNEY. THESE RIGHTS SHOULD BE AFFORDED TO THE JUVENILE NOT TO ADVANTAGE HIM VIS-A-VIS THE ADULT, BUT TO ATTEMPT TO EQUALIZE THEIR POSITIONS. THE TRADEOFF BETWEEN THE LAW'S NEED TO INSURE THAT A JUVENILE WITNESS'S DECISION TO SPEAK WITH ADVERSE COUNSEL BE INFORMED AND COMPETENT AND THE PARTY LITIGANT'S NEED TO DISCOVER DETAILS OF HIS CASE, REQUIRES MINIMAL ALTERATION OF THE PRESENT LEGAL AND ETHICAL STANDARDS. THE JUVENILE SHOULD BE INFORMED OF THE IDENTITY OF THE ATTORNEY AND HIS RELATIONSHIP TO THE LITIGATION. HE SHOULD BE ADVISED OF HIS RIGHT TO REFRAIN FROM SPEAKING WITH THE ATTORNEY. IF QUESTIONED, THE ATTORNEY SHOULD REVEAL THE POSSIBILITIES OF SELF-INCRIMINATION OR IMPEACHMENT AT TRIAL. FURTHERMORE, THE JUVENILE SHOULD HAVE THE RIGHT TO HAVE HIS PARENTS OR ANOTHER ADULT PRESENT AT THE INTERVIEW AND SHOULD BE SO INFORMED BY THE ATTORNEY. NO NOTIFICATION OF THE PROSECUTING ATTORNEY OR THE JUVENILE'S PARENTS SHOULD BE NECESSARY. IF AT ANY TIME THE JUVENILE EXPRESSES A DESIRE TO TERMINATE THE INTERVIEW OR TO HAVE AN ADULT PRESENT, NO FURTHER QUESTIONING SHOULD BE ATTEMPTED. OVERALL, SOME PROTECTION FOR THE JUVENILE MUST COME FROM THE ATTORNEY HIMSELF, I.E., HIS OWN ETHICS MUST LEAD HIM TO CONSIDER THE PARTICULAR CIRCUMSTANCES OF A CASE AND THE SENSITIVITIES OF PARTICULAR JUVENILES. FOOTNOTES ARE PROVIDED. (DEG)
Index Term(s): Interview and interrogation; Juveniles; Right against self incrimination; Rights of minors; Witness impeachment; Witness protection; Witnesses
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