Uploaded by norm.medlock

Chapter 7 National Court System and Juvenile Courts Handout

advertisement
Chapter 7
Juvenile Justice: The System, Process, and Law
by Rolando V. del Carmen and Chad R. Trulson
Prepared by Chad R. Trulson: University of North Texas
The National Court System and
The Juvenile Courts
The Court System and Its Process
■
The Federal Court System
■
U.S. Supreme Court (Washington, D.C.) referred to as the Court
(capitalized C)
■
■
■
Justices appointed by President for life, cases heard en banc, rule of
four
Hears roughly 85 cases per year
U.S. Courts of Appeals
■
■
■
13 judicial circuits, each covering three or more states
Judges appointed by President for life, cases heard en banc or in
division
Usually the final decision-maker of federal cases
■
U.S. District Courts
■
U.S. Magistrate Courts
■
■
■
States may have one or multiple districts
Judges appointed by President for life
To relieve workload of U.S. District Courts
The Court System and Its Process
■
The State Court System
■
High Court: Each state has a high court, Texas and
Oklahoma have two (one civil, one criminal)
■
Intermediate Appellate Courts: Most states have
intermediate appellate courts
General Jurisdiction Trial Courts: Below appellate
courts, are trial courts
In states without intermediate appellate courts,
appealed cases from trial courts go directly to state’s
highest court
■
■
■
Usually, but not always named the Supreme Court
The Court System and Its Process
■
The Appeal Process
■
■
■
Appeals can be made to the next court in a judicial
structure
Appeals are primarily based on denial of defendant’s
rights at trial
Appeals may be:
■
■
■
■
Affirmed
Reversed
Reversed and remand
A reversal on appeal means that the person can be
tried again, without violating double jeopardy
The Court System and Its Process
■
The Geographical Boundaries of Court Decisions
■
■
■
■
■
■
Most cases in juvenile justice are not decided by the U.S.
Supreme Court
As such, most court decisions are limited to territorial
boundaries
The whole country is under the jurisdiction of the U.S.
Supreme Court—its rulings provide the law for the nation
U.S. Courts of Appeals decisions apply to a particular circuit
only. The 5th Circuit court’s decisions apply only to Texas,
Louisiana, and Mississippi
U.S. District Court decisions apply only to a specific district
within the state
State cases apply only to a particular state, and will be
respected by federal courts unless the decision “offends”
the Constitution
The Court System and Its Process
■
The Geographical Boundaries of Court Decisions
(cont…)
■
■
■
■
Geographical boundaries means that conflicting rulings
on juvenile justice can occur
These conflicts may only be resolved with U.S.
Supreme Court action
The absence of Court action means that there may be
different procedures and rules for juvenile justice
throughout the nation
Since most juvenile cases do not reach the U.S.
Supreme Court, one must look to the lower courts for
rules on juvenile justice
The Court System and Its Process
■
Judicial Precedent (Stare Decisis)
■
■
■
■
The principle that when a court has laid down a
principle of law pertaining to certain facts and
circumstances, it will follow the same principle in
future cases, with similar facts and circumstances
Abiding by decided cases sets judicial precedent
U.S. Supreme Court decisions are precedent for any
court in the U.S. It is the most binding kind of
precedent
When lower courts do not follow higher court
precedent, they may be reversed on appeal
The Court System and Its Process
■
Federal versus State Jurisdiction
■
■
Federal and state jurisdictions are considered
sovereign entities
This means that the federal government and a state
government could both try a person for the same
crime without violating double jeopardy
■
■
This applies to two or more states as well, all are considered
separate sovereigns
This usually does not happen, unless the person was
not sufficiently punished in the first prosecution –
usually in state court
The Court System and Its Process
■
Juveniles in Federal Court
■
Very rare
■
There is no federal juvenile court
■
■
■
No federal juvenile institutions
Federal law violations usually mean a violation of
an identical state law
■
■
A juvenile federal hearing would take place in front of a
U.S. District judge or magistrate
And will usually be tried first at state level
Federal law limits juvenile prosecutions in federal
court
The Court System and Its Process
■
Juveniles in Federal Court (cont…)
■
Juveniles are tried in federal court only when
there is a “substantial federal interest”:
■
■
■
■
State does not or refuses to assume jurisdiction
State with jurisdiction does not have adequate
programs or services for juvenile offenders
Offense is a violent felony, a drug trafficking or
importation offense, or a firearms offense
If a juvenile is tried in federal court, they may
be waived to adult federal court
The Origin and Formation of the First
Juvenile Court
■
What Led Up to Juvenile Courts?
■
The culmination of several events in U.S.
society
■
■
Development of institutions for youth
Houses of refuge and the adoptions of parens
patriae in America
■
■
■
■
Ex parte Crouse (1838) vs. O’Connell v. Turner (1870)
Idea of adolescence and that children do not go
from juveniles to adults overnight
Restrictions on child labor
Compulsory school attendance
The Origin and Formation of the First
Juvenile Court
■
The First Juvenile Court
■
1899 Illinois Legislature
■
■
■
■
■
Illinois Juvenile Court Act (actual name was An Act to
Regulate the Treatment and Control of Dependent, Neglected,
and Delinquent Children)
Child-savers: Philanthropic or not?
Procedural protections were an impediment to
rehabilitation
“In the best interests of the child” as an avenue for
abuse
By 1950, every state had a juvenile court – took over
50 years from its beginning in 1899
The Juvenile Court Structure
■
Organization of Juvenile Courts
■
Juvenile courts are called by many names
■
Where juvenile courts are found?
■
■
■
■
Probate, domestic relations, or family court
General jurisdiction trial courts
Special jurisdiction trial courts
Limited jurisdiction trial courts
The Juvenile Court Structure
■
Do Juvenile Courts Have Jurisdiction Over All
Matters Involving Juveniles?
■
■
■
■
No
This is because there may be several courts that deal
with juveniles in a particular jurisdiction
One court may deal with serious delinquency, another
court that deals with juveniles may handle dependency
cases
This becomes an issue with youth and their families
who have multiple problems and need multiple courts
to solve their problems
The Juvenile Court Structure
■
Should There be a Unified or Coordinated
Juvenile Court?
■
Unified Court
■
Coordinated Court
■
■
■
All juvenile related issues dealt with in one court by one judge
Multiple courts and agencies dealing with a juvenile and his or
her family could coordinate their work, for example, different
judges could get together to prevent conflicting rulings
Such moves would be difficult, especially unified, but
some states have these types of structures
The Juvenile Court Structure
■
Administration of Juvenile Courts
■
Court workload
■
Case processing
■
■
■
Volume or number of cases
Time to hear and resolve a case once it reaches the
court
Case disposition
■
Time it takes for the case to get to court in the first
place
The Juvenile Court Structure
■
Administration of Juvenile Courts (cont…)
■
Court workload
■
■
■
Case processing
■
■
■
Roughly 2 million cases in front of juvenile courts each year
(70-80% delinquency/status offense cases)
Remainder dependency and neglect
Judges are hurried in some jurisdictions
Typical cases may last from 2-6 hours, depending on the type
of case
Case disposition
■
■
A large number of juvenile cases take more than 90 days to
reach the juvenile court
Juveniles do not have much redress unless state law provides
a remedy for slow disposition times
The Juvenile Court Structure
■
Specialized Juvenile Courts
■
Teen courts
■
■
■
■
■
Dispositional in nature
Diversionary in nature
Deal with minor offenders, such as truancy and
theft
Dispositions include community service, jury duty in
teen court, and counseling
Youth have various stages of participation, and may
even be judges, bailiffs, and attorneys
The Juvenile Court Structure
■
Specialized Juvenile Courts (cont…)
■
Drug Courts
■
■
■
■
■
Can be a diversion or adjudication program
Are both adjudicatory and dispositional in nature
More like “regular” juvenile courts, but attempt to
deal with both delinquency and substance abuse
issues
Youth do not play roles as judges and attorneys
Very intense program with heavy judge involvement
The Juvenile Court Structure
■
Juvenile Court Personnel
■
■
■
■
■
■
■
■
Juvenile Court Judge
Juvenile Court Administrator
Juvenile Court Master or Referee
Juvenile Prosecutor
Juvenile Defense Attorney
Youth Advocates (CASA or Guardian ad litem)
Probation Officers
Bottom line: the responsibilities of these court
personnel are diverse.
Is There a Need for a Separate
Juvenile Court?
■
Abolish the Juvenile Court
■
■
■
■
■
■
Juveniles are more responsible today for their actions
Juveniles are not treated equally in the juvenile justice
system
The adult court can handle serious and violent
juveniles more effectively
The adult system could adapt to juveniles; there is no
need for a duplicative system
That juveniles receive the same sentences as adult,
without equal procedural protections
The case of the “youth discount”
Is There a Need for a Separate
Juvenile Court?
■
Keep the Juvenile Court
■
■
■
■
■
■
It provides numerous helpful services that are foreign to the adult
system
Rehabilitation has not been lost in juvenile justice
Adopting the adult system would preclude individualization in
sentencing, a hallmark of juvenile justice
The juvenile system does more than just sentence offenders and
provides numerous helpful intervention before, during, and after
adjudication and sentencing
Serious and violent offenders can be waived to adult court, they
are few and far between anyway
The juvenile justice system is the most successful component of
the entire justice system because most offenders do not come
back—it makes no sense to throw it away for a few serious
offenders who will not change