Juvenile and Adult Courts

Topics: Crime, Court, Judge Pages: 5 (1635 words) Published: December 16, 2011
Juvenile and Adult Courts The juvenile justice system shares many of the same components of the adult justice system. Historically both adults and juveniles were tried in the same courts and if convicted they both served out their sentences in the very same facilities. Over time, the system changed for youths however; there remain as many similarities as there are differences between the two justice systems. In this text, one will look at an overview of the juvenile justice system as well as a point-by-point comparison between the adult and juvenile systems. One will also discuss the implications for juvenile offenders and the trends in increasing use of waivers or remanding youths to adult courts to be processed. Finally, one will look at the repercussion of doing away with juvenile courts. Overview

The juvenile justice system did not begin to take form until the first of the 20th century. Up until that time youths were tried in the very same courts as adults and if convicted, they were held in the same detention facilities. It was finally determined that a separate justice system with their own courts and holding institutions for juveniles would better serve delinquent youths. The primary function of the juvenile justice system is not conviction but adjudication. It places an importance on developing an evocative course that would permit youths that disobey the law the ability to achieve noteworthy rehabilitation. Answering for a criminal act takes second place in the juvenile justice system. First is to provide resources and services that allow rehabilitation along with proper amalgamation of juvenile delinquents and society. The features of the juvenile justice system are separate courts and internment facilities. A minor charged with illegal conduct will be identified as an adjudicated juvenile offender and will not be considered as guilty. This is based on the belief that a juvenile lacks the mental capacity needed to be found guilty of a crime in the equivalent comportment as an adult. For confinement the juvenile justice system believes that the less restrictive the better and tends to focus on placing adjudicated juveniles on probation whenever possible. The proceedings of the juvenile justice system are similar to those in an adult trial such as witness testimony and evidence presentation however; at the close of the trial, the youth is not convicted. By theory, it is believed that youths that perform illegal acts stand a better chance to be rehabilitated than adults do. Point by point comparison between juvenile and adult courts

The juvenile court system focuses more on rehabilitation of the juveniles. The punishments seem to set examples that show leniency toward the juveniles. Some argue that this type of punishment does not set good standards in persuading the juveniles not to commit crimes. The adult court system focuses more on placing criminal sanctions to match the offense in hopes that it will deter further crimes from occurring and it will be a successful form of punishment. This is not always the case according to the statistics of repeat offenders and some punishments do not match the crime. However, others argue that it is better to be strict when issuing punishments than to give a little slap on the hand to both, the juvenile and adults. The juvenile justice system focuses more on assessing the juvenile’s history, the juvenile goes before a judge to decide his or her fate for the crime he or she is facing accusations of, and with adults more attention is on legal facts and evidence. There are limits on public access to juvenile records to protect their privacy because the system thinks it has a chance of rehabilitating them. On the other hand, there is open public access to criminal records for adults. The terminology is even different for adults in comparison to juveniles. For...
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