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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 89468 Find in a Library
Title: Analysis of the Juvenile Court's Discretionary Power in Waiver of Jurisdiction Hearings
Journal: South Texas Law Journal  Volume:21  Issue:1  Dated:(1980)  Pages:80-97
Author(s): J A Ottis
Date Published: 1981
Page Count: 18
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The growth of the Texas juvenile court's discretionary power in the waiver hearing has eclipsed certain basic rights extended to the juvenile by the U.S. Supreme Court and section 54.02 of the Texas Family Code.
Abstract: The juvenile's right to a complete investigation before waiver certification is possible has been determined to be an absolute right, but if this is not documented in court records, the juvenile must rebut the presumption that the court has performed this duty. The juvenile's right to access to written reports has been guaranteed, while the right to cross-examine has been denied, because the juvenile court may consider both inadmissible confessions and hearsay beyond that contemplated by section 54.02. The juvenile's right to the protection of the juvenile justice system is no longer emphasized by requiring the court to make findings on the factors required in section 54.02(f). Instead, the emphasis in the waiver decision has been on the seriousness of the crime and the juvenile's background. The juvenile's right to a written order has deteriorated to the extent that the written order need not state the court's reasons in clear and concise language but may instead list the court's findings. The juvenile courts should be required to document all procedures, and if this is not done, no presumption of regularity should smooth the court's way. All hearsay evidence beyond that contemplated by section 54.02(f) should be barred, and any inadmissible confession should remain inadmissible. Further, the factors required to be considered by section 54.02(f) in the waiver decision should be established, and the written order required of the court should clearly and simply state the court's reasoning for its waiver of jurisdiction. A total of 114 footnotes are provided.
Index Term(s): Judicial discretion; Juvenile court waiver; Texas
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=89468

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