juvenile justice system

Topics: Brain, Crime, Human brain Pages: 22 (6284 words) Published: October 7, 2014
Juvenile Justice
Developed by Roberta J. Ching

Reading Selections for This Module:
Garinger, Gail. “Juveniles Don’t Deserve Life Sentences.” New York Times 15 Mar. 2012, New York ed.: A35. Print.
Jenkins, Jennifer Bishop. “On Punishment and Teen Killers.” Juvenile Justice Information Exchange. 2 Aug. 2011. Web. 11 June 2012. < http://jjie.org/jennifer-bishop-jenkins-on-punishmentteen-killers/19184>. Lundstrom, Marjie. “Kids Are Kids—Until They Commit Crimes.” Sacramento Bee 1 Mar. 2001: A3. Print.

Thompson, Paul. “Startling Finds on Teenage Brains.” Sacramento Bee 25 May 2001: B7. Print. Additional Reading Selection:

Anderson, Scott. “Greg Ousley Is Sorry for Killing His Parents. Is That Enough?” New York Times Magazine. 19 July 2012. Web. 11 June 2012. .

Reading Rhetorically
Activity 1

Getting Ready to Read
Quickwrite (5 minutes). If you committed a serious crime, do you think it would be fair for you to be punished the same way an adult who committed the same crime would be?

Activity 2

Exploring Key Concepts
1. Who is a juvenile? What are some synonyms for “juvenile”? 2. What are the differences between an adult and a juvenile? Brainstorm a list of qualities that characterize a juvenile but not an adult.


Activity 3

Exploring Key Definitions
Definitions of some legal terms for killing someone are provided below. Study them, and explain the differences in your own words. Definitions of Legal Terms
Homicide is the killing of one person by another, either intentionally or unintentionally. Homicide includes accidents and murder.
Murder is killing someone with malice of forethought. It could be done while committing another crime. Murder is always illegal. First-degree murder is killing a person with malice of forethought; the killing was planned. It was done deliberately.

Second-degree murder is a killing done during a crime deemed dangerous to a human life. The crime was most likely not committed with the intention of killing.
Voluntary manslaughter is killing someone intentionally but without malice of forethought. For example, if the killing was a crime of passion (killing a spouse or lover because of jealousy), the intention was to kill. However, there was no malice of forethought because it was not planned.

Involuntary manslaughter is killing someone unlawfully but without malice of forethought. It was committed without intent to kill and without a conscious disregard for human life.
Matching Activity
Now read the following scenarios and fill in the boxes.
Crime or

or sentencing

A troubled 17-year-old girl has
slowly poisoned her parents
each night at dinner. After three
months, she came home to find
them dead on the kitchen floor.
The coroner’s report indicated that
cyanide poisoning caused their

Sentenced to
life in prison
without parole


Actual situation

Three 16-year-olds were hanging
out at the park drinking whiskey.
One boy started shoving his
friend. Soon the shoving escalated
into punching. One boy tripped,
and his head hit a sharp-edged
rock. The boy died before help




Suspicious that his girlfriend was
cheating, a 16-year-old boy went
to her house and found her in
bed with his brother. Impulsively,
he grabbed the nearest lamp and
hit his brother on the head. His
brother died two days later.
A 13-year-old boy broke into
an auto parts business to steal
hubcaps. The 17-year-old security
guard picked up his boss’s gun
and fired two warning shots at
the thief. The second shot hit the
13-year-old and killed him on the

“Kids are Kids—Until They Commit Crimes”
“Startling Finds on Teenage Brains”
Activity 4

Surveying the Text
Discuss the following questions as a class:

Activity 5...
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