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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 77353 Find in a Library
Title: Survey of Juvenile Incarcerations in West Virginia's County Jails, July 1 to December 31, 1980
Corporate Author: West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals
Juvenile Justice Cmtte
United States of America
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 10
Sponsoring Agency: West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals
Charleston, WV 25305
Type: Statistics
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The results of a survey of juvenile incarcerations in West Virginia's county jails from July 1 through December 31, 1980 are presented.
Abstract: These results show that 30 out of the State's 53 counties which have jail facilities claimed that they did not incarcerate any juveniles in their jails. The remaining 23 counties housed 261 juveniles in their jails -- a 31 percent decrease compared to the figure for the first 6 months of the year. The number of incarcerations per county ranged from 1 to 76. Authorities in six counties asserted that the portions of their jails in which young people are incarcerated are 'detention centers' rather than juvenile sections of adult jails, and, therefore, the State law pertaining to juvenile incarceration was not broken. This law allows children to be placed in jail only if they are over the age of 14 years and are charged with the commission of a violent felony or are males 16 years of age and older who are awaiting transfer to a correctional institution. Juveniles may not be housed within sight or sound of adult inmates. Of all incarcerations, only 13.5 percent appear to have been done clearly in conformity with this law. The remainder were illegal and involved the jailing of juveniles charged with nonviolent felonies (52), misdemeanors (99), and status offenses (43). The percentage of such detentions declined only 2 percent from the figure for the first 6 months. Although the illegal detentions may be partly due to the dearth of juvenile detention centers, the shortage cannot justify the continued violation of the law. Data tables and footnotes are included.
Index Term(s): Corrections statistics; Juvenile detention; Juveniles in adult facilities; West Virginia
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