Tuesday, March 19, 2013

13 year-olds in adult criminal justice system?

New rule would allow 13 year olds to be forced into the adult criminal justice system

On March 5, NC legislators introduced a bill that would allow for children as young as 13 to be placed in the adult criminal justice system.

Do you know what this means for kids who are prosecuted as adults?
  • Youth are 36 times more likely to commit suicide in an adult facility than a juvenile detention
  • Kids in the adult system are 34% more likely than youth in the juvenile court system to be rearrested
  • Kids are at an extreme risk of physical and sexual assault when placed in adult facilities
  • Youth of color are more likely than white youth to be prosecuted in the criminal justice system
HB 217 would remove judicial discretion for certain felonies allegedly committed by juveniles 13 years or older. Currently under North Carolina law, judges weigh the protection of the public and the best interests of the juvenile in determining whether to transfer the case to adult court. Just by a written motion, Section 7 of HB 217 gives prosecutors absolute power to prosecute juveniles 13 years or older in the adult criminal court system and strips juvenile court judges of their decision-making powers. 

This is another attack on the youth and communities of North Carolina - removing judicial oversight leads to the unchecked prosecution of our children in adult court. This proposal is flawed and detrimental to the future of our state. 

Click here to view the facts on HB 217.

WE MUST STOP THIS ATTACK NOW! HB 217 is going to be heard this Wednesday at 10am.