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Overview of Juvenile Justice


Homicides include accidents and murder. Murder: ... The officer announced that he was off duty police and both suspects shot Officer Pompei in the torso, ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Overview of Juvenile Justice

Overview of Juvenile Justice
Questions for Thought
  • At what age do you begin to understand that there
    are consequences for your actions?
  • At what age did you learn that stealing is wrong?
  • At what age did you learn that killing someone is
  • On a number scale, determine what rights you
    should be given at what age and justify your

  • Homicide the killing of one person of another
    either intentionally or unintentionally.
    Homicides include accidents and murder.
  • Murder the killing of someone with malice of
    forethought. It could be done while committing
    another crime.

Terms, continued
  • 1st Degree Murder the killing of a person with
    malice of forethought (planning) the crime was
    planned. It was done deliberately and is illegal.
  • 2nd Degree Murder a killing done during a crime
    deemed very dangerous to a human life. The crime
    was most likely not committed with intention of

Terms, continued
  • Voluntary Manslaughter the killing of someone
    intentionally but without planning. (ex crime of
  • Involuntary Manslaughter killing someone
    unlawfully but without planning. It was committed
    without an intention to kill and without a
    conscious disregard for human life.

  • At what age would you consider someone a juvenile
    vs. an adult? If you committed a serious crime,
    do you think it would be fair to be punished the
    same way an adult who committed the same crime
    would be? Why or why not? What types of
    punishments should adults receive vs juveniles?

  • Using your knowledge of the preceding terms,
    determine how the following crimes should be
    classified and what the suspects deserve as their

10 year old shoots neo-Nazi father
  • On May 1, 2011 a ten year old boy shot his father
    in the head while he was sleeping on the couch.
  • Jeffery Hall was a member and director for the
    National Socialist Movement and reportedly abused
    his son and wife.
  • The ten year old was afraid that his dad was
    cheating on his mom and he would be expected to
    choose whom to live with.

You be the Judge
  • What crime should the now 13 year old boy be
    charged with and what should his sentence be?
    Explain your rationale for your decision.

Decision of the US Justice System
  • On January 14, 2013, a California judge ruled
    that the then ten year old boy committed
    second-degree murder-and he knew what he was
    doing was wrong.
  • He is spending the next 10 years in a juvenile
  • He could remain in custody until his 23rd
    birthday, though he could be freed sooner or have
    a number of other living arrangements as
    determined by the judge.

16 year old drunk driver kills 4
  • Ethan Couch, a 16-year-old who drove while drunk
    killed four people and injured two others.
  • He sideswiped a broken down car and killed the
    four people who had stopped to help, and two
    other teens were thrown from the bed of his
    pickup truck (one is no longer able to move or
    talk due to a brain injury).
  • Couch had three times the legal limit of alcohol
    in his blood (thats the limit for adultsminors
    shouldnt have any alcohol in their blood), and
    he also had Valium and THC in his system.

You be the Judge
  • What crime should Ethan Couch be charged with and
    what sentence does he deserve? Explain your
    rationale for your decision.

Decision of the US Justice System
  • The Texas Judge believed the defenses claim that
    the young man suffered from affluenza.
  • The term affluenza came into public use with a
    1997 PBS special and subsequent book of that
    name. In that original context, the term referred
    to increasing materialism and keeping up with
    the Joneses.
  • In poor mans terms he is too rich and has been
    given too much so one cannot comprehend their
  • The defense argued that Couch shouldnt be held
    as responsible because his parents were so
    permissive in their style of child rearing that
    Couch did not experience socially appropriate
    consequences for his socially inappropriate
  • Rather than the 20 years of jail time the
    prosecution asked for, Texas Judge Jean Boyd gave
    Couch absolutely no jail time and instead
    sentenced him to 10 years of probation and time
    in a long term treatment facility.
  • That facility costs 450,000 per year, paid for
    by Couchs wealthy parents. Among other
    amenities, it offers equine therapy and organic
    food choices.

Shooting of Officer PompeiJune 9, 1995
  • Summary of Crime
  • Two armed male suspects (16 and 17) robbed a
    grocery store.
  • Officer Pompei (30) was off duty and intervened
    as one of the suspects began pistol whipping a
    box boy with special needs.
  • The officer announced that he was off duty police
    and both suspects shot Officer Pompei in the
    torso, and as he turned, once in the back.
    Pompei called 911 from a payphone outside and was
    pronounced dead two hours later.

  • The suspects were able to get away because an 18
    year old brother to one of the suspects drove the
    getaway car.
  • Suspects had been injured and went to the
    hospital where they were admitted and put into a
    room together.
  • Suspects were taped and their confessions and
    plans to escape to Mexico were later used as
    evidence during the trial.

You be the Judge
  • What crime should the following suspects be
    charged with and what punishment should they
    receive? Explain your rationale for your
  • 18 year old getaway driver
  • 17 year old shooting suspect
  • 16 year old shooting suspect

Decision of the US Justice System
  • 18 year old driver of getaway car was up for
    death penalty but pled guilty and acted as a
    witness in exchange for 26 years to life.
  • 16 and 17 year old suspects sentenced to life
    without the possibility of parole for first
    degree murder.

Quickwrite 2
  • Revisit your first quickwrite and explain if you
    agree or disagree with your original response.
    What evidence persuaded you and why? If your
    opinion hasnt changed, explain why and what
    evidence helped to reinforce your original belief.

Now read the following scenarios and fill in the
  Actual situation Crime or conviction Punishment 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 coroners report indicated that cyanide poisoning caused their deaths.
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 arrived.    
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 bosss gun and fired two warning shots at the thief. The second shot hit the 13-year-old and killed him on the spot.    
Overview of the Juvenile Justice System
  • relatively new systemthe first juvenile court
  • created to address criminal and problem behaviors
    among children between the ages of (approx.) 10
    to 18

Basis of the JJS
  • Childhood was created in the early 19th century
    and stages of childhood, adolescence defined
    shortly afterward
  • Developmentally distinguished adolescents from
    adults emotionally, psychologically, and
  • Supported 2 notions (1) culpability (2) ability
    to change

Juvenile v. Adult Justice Systems
Juvenile System Adult System
Goal(s) Rehabilitation Punishment
Style Non-Adversarial, Confidential Adversarial, Public
Terminology Medical Model Legal/Constitutional
Role of Family Very Significant Little to No Significance
Process Adjudication/Delinquent Trial/Guilty or Innocent
Sentencing Indeterminate-Broad Determinate-Focused
Are Adolescents Different from Adults?
  • Increasingly, research demonstrates that
    adolescents are not little adults
  • Adolescence is a period of intense physical,
    emotional, and cognitive development
  • Forced to make choices under the worst conditions
  • Exposed to highly risky situations
  • Often overestimate their understanding of a
    situation while underestimating the consequences
    of their actions
  • Further complicated when youths live in
    disadvantaged, high risk environments
  • Perhaps most important for this discussion is the
    fact that adolescents process emotionally
    charged information from a more reactive,
    gut-level place than adults

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