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Juvenile Justice News

NEW YORK: Governor Cuomo could do something right now (The Marshall Project)

In Miller v. Alabama, the United States Supreme Court, announced a legal principle that social science, neuroscience and common sense had long recognized: juveniles have “diminished culpability and greater prospects for reform” such that “children are constitutionally different from adults for purposes of sentencing.” Relying on that principle, the court held that imposing a mandatory life sentence without the possibility of parole on juveniles violated the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition on cruel and unusual punishment, even for the crime of murder. As Dana Goldstein’s heart-wrenching article points out, New York State is one of only two states that automatically charge juveniles in adult criminal court. There is an emerging consensus that this is an unsupportable practice, even though some lawmakers are resisting legislation to change it.

New York: Rikers to Ban Isolation for Inmates 21 and Younger

New York Times

New York City officials agreed on Tuesday to a plan that would eliminate the use of solitary confinement for all inmates 21 and younger, a move that would place the long-troubled Rikers Island complex at the forefront of national jail reform efforts.

Next “Raise the Age” battle will be making sure some felonies remain in law

As legislation to raise the juvenile age of prosecution gains steam, advocates are preparing for their next big hurdle in getting a law on the books.

North Carolina ‘Raise the Age’ Bill Could Leave New York Behind

Criminal justice reform advocates frequently note that New York and North Carolina are the only two states to charge 16- and 17-year-olds as adults for non-violent offenses.

North Carolina: NC public defenders rally against racial disparities in justice system (The State)

Public defenders from across North Carolina gathered around a Martin Luther King Jr. statue in Charlotte on Friday to decry racial inequities in the justice system. The attorneys, who get a close-up view of what's happening in the courts and jails across the state, called for a system free of racial inequality, discrimination and bias.

Obama’s New Juvenile Justice Rules: What To Know

The Justice Department last week published proposed new rules related to the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (JJDPA) that will require most states to make significant improvements or face the loss of federal funds at a time when the appropriation has dropped significantly. 

OHIO: Ohio Juvenile Prisons Reduced Use of Seclusion Last Year (Ohio.com)

After being challenged by the U.S. Department of Justice, Ohio's juvenile justice agency reduced the solitary confinement of its young inmates last year.A new report by the Ohio Department of Youth Services shows seclusion of inmates declined by more than 66 percent in 2014 from the previous year.

Once Rikers Island Took Kalief Browder’s Life, His Siblings Knew Their Mother Was Next

Ms. Venida Browder’s house collected sounds that cemented lifelong memories within its walls. In her Bronx abode, the matriarch raised seven children who would go on to keep the seams in tact in the fabric of family. Sounds of fun times passed through every nook of the two-floor house, but sounds of despair also found a space within her home.

One lawn at a time: D.C. seniors get help from juvenile offenders headed home

Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D) helped mow 81-year-old Evelyn Young’s lawn Saturday to raise awareness about a new city program in which youths reentering society after time in the juvenile justice system provide lawn-care services for senior citizens.

Oops, We Took 20 Years of Your Life by Mistake. Have a Nice Day.

The recent and tragic suicide of my friend and fellow exoneree Darryl Hunt is a stark reminder that no monetary compensation can make up for the psychological toll of wrongful conviction. When a wrongfully convicted person is released from prison, it’s often to a throng of reporters clamoring to capture images of an emotional reunion with his smiling family and friends, and lawyers. These images instill a sense of vindication and a happy ending. But what is too often unseen is how difficult it is to re-enter society after years or decades of confinement -- especially if you are innocent. These are the unseen scars, and too many states pay them inadequate attention, or none at all.

Op-Ed: Our Work To Reform The Juvenile Justice System Is Not Yet Complete

Over the last few years, evidence-based reforms at the local, state, and national level have endeavored to reverse some of the harmful laws and policies that emerged during the tough-on-crime decades.

Our Criminal Courts Are Failing Juvenile Defendants

Getting in trouble and getting punished is a natural part of adolescence. But for some teens the punishment is worse than the crime, executed not by a stern parent but by a county judge who leaves them defenseless.

Out Of Time: The System Failed Kalief Browder, But It Doesn’t Have To Fail Others

Spike TV’s docu-series TIME: The Kalief Browder Story walked viewers through the unimaginable and horrifying experience that Kalief Browder endured at Rikers Island for allegedly stealing a backpack in May 2010. Because of a bag, a faulty identification from the victim, and a vicious justice system, Kalief spent three years of his childhood in the prison system while his case was wrapped up in a number of technicalities and misrepresented information.

Part 1 of “Young and Arrested”: A Boy in Prison by Age 14

Streetlights glare inside Lieutenant Shane DeJarnett’s white unmarked SUV as he cruises through Pine Hills  past houses, and churches and pedestrians. As Orange County’s nighttime sheriff, DeJarnett keeps a close eye on what is happening in this mixed-income black neighborhood on the west side of Orlando.

People in Charlotte prepare for 'Raise the Age' law

People in Charlotte gathered Saturday to discuss changes to who is classified as an adult in the criminal justice system. North Carolina law says 16 and 17-year-olds are considered adults in the court system.

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