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Analysis: Why Adolescents Should Be Tried As Adults

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Analysis: Why Adolescents Should Be Tried As Adults
Dr. Allison Burke stated, “Adolescence is a tumultuous time, full or change and transformation... The adultification of youth (or waiver to adult court) is unduly harsh for youth whose brains have not fully formed” (Should Adolescents). Many facts point to the conclusion that juveniles should not be tried as adults. Although some believe children should be punished for what they have done, it should not be done in such a harsh and permanent method. Juveniles make bad decisions, but they are somewhat not responsible for doing so. Excluding the case of violent crimes, such as murder and rape, children should never be tried as adults. About 200,000 children are charged every year as adults in America, according to the Open Society Foundations …show more content…
Jessica Wilde stated, “All crimes committed by juveniles should and must be treated in the same regard, it’s not to punish heinous acts, then to provide justice to the families of the victims” (Teens Should). Some argue that children should be tried as adults because they know what they are doing. According to some studies, brain development is not complete until the mid-20s (Merrefield 3). Others believe that by not punishing juveniles to the full extent of the law, it is implied that they are above the law and receive special treatment (Should Juveniles be Tried as Adults? 3). On the other hand, holding a twelve year old to the same standards as a thirty year old when they lack the same mental development is wrong (Should Juveniles be Tried as Adults? 5). It is proven that the cognitive development of a child is not complete until they are in their early twenties (Should Juveniles be Tried as Adults? 5). Although there may be a few downfalls to not prosecuting juveniles as adults, it benefits the youth of the nation far …show more content…
Middle adolescence, ages fourteen through eighteen, could be the worst time in a child’s life for rational decision making (Merrefield 3). There is a separation of the adult court system and juvenile court system for a reason. This is recognition of clear differences between the age groups. Juvenile courts offer a greater chance for forgiveness and redemption. A 1996 Texas study found that juveniles sentenced in adult court received longer sentences than they would if they were tried in a juvenile court (PBS); so when juveniles are tried in the adult court system, they receive an even longer sentence in a much harsher environment. Children are five times more likely to be sexually assaulted in adult prisons than in juvenile facilities and face increased risk of suicide (Children in Prison). Putting juveniles in adult facilities puts them at extreme risk; being sexually assaulted affects the rest of the victim’s life. 76% percent of robbers prosecuted in criminal court were rearrested, as compared to 67% of those prosecuted in juvenile court (PBS 2). That is an almost 10% difference and that is 10% that can be repaired. The youth is the future of this nation and they need to have a chance for

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