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Delinquent Juveniles Should Not Be Tried as Adults - Essay Example

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Delinquent juveniles should not be tried as adults Name: Institution: Abstract: Prosecuting and sentencing delinquent juveniles is a major problem with the criminal justice system. Juveniles have been tried as adults for felonies. Majority of the states have enacted laws that allow juveniles to be prosecuted in adult courts…
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Delinquent Juveniles Should Not Be Tried as Adults
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Download file to see previous pages Initiation of early intervention programs and counseling will effectively deter juvenile delinquency. Delinquent juveniles should not be tried as adults Introduction The criminal justice system experiences many problems that hinder it from reducing the crime rates in the US. Despite the efforts that have been made in policing, prosecution, and sentencing of the criminal acts, the criminal justice system has remained ineffective in deterring crimes. One of the major problems with the criminal justice system is trying and sentencing of criminal juvenile offenders as adults (Siegel & Worrall, 2012, p. 315). Juvenile offenders lack the mental and emotional capacity to form intent and understand the consequences of committing crimes. According to the legal definition, a delinquent juvenile is a child who commits criminal acts that are punishable by law. According to the sociological perspective, a delinquent juvenile is just a child with antisocial behaviors in the society. The criminal justice system should aim at rehabilitating the juvenile offenders and not punishing them. Judges, lawyers, and prosecutors obstruct the processes that must be followed in trying the juvenile offenders. Almost all States have amended the laws to make it easier to sentence the juvenile offenders as adults (Siegel & Worrall, 2012, p. 315). ...
presentation of the juvenile offenders during the trial and constitutionality of the harsh punishments has made the criminal justice system ineffective in prosecuting the juveniles. Juveniles have been prosecuted for joint crimes with adults in crimes that may not have involved the use of violence or physical injury of the victim. According to the US laws, juveniles of 14 years lack the legal capacity to hold a driver’s license, to seek employment, or enter in to legally binding contracts on their own. Children are required to attend school and receive adequate protection of the government in protection of their rights. The above concept of the law has been ignored by the criminal justice system, since juvenile offenders lack the cognitive and mental capacity to reason and form intent while committing criminal acts like murder and assault (Albanese & Dammer, 2011 p. 265). Young teenagers experience varied emotions and behavior swings due to high vulnerability to pressure and social stress and, therefore, lack the mental ability to resist the risk taking behaviors like drug abuse. Juvenile offenders experience low social status in the society than adults. In 1994 alone, 2.7 million juveniles were arrested by the police for engaging in numerous crimes including violent crimes, status offenses, and non-violent crimes. In the same year, over 12,000 delinquency cases were referred to adult criminal courts by a process known as certification. The waiver of jurisdiction allows the juveniles of the ages of 16 and 17 years to be tried as adults in the adult criminal courts (Smith & Cole, 2008, p. 398). According to a Supreme Court ruling in the case of Stanford V Kentucky (1989), juveniles as young as 16 years can receive death penalties for juvenile criminal acts. About ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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