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North Carolina

Contact Information

The Youth Justice Project (YJP) of the Southern Coalition for Social Justice (SCSJ) works to ensure equity, fairness, and justice for youth in high-quality education, juvenile, and criminal systems.

Primary Contact Name: Tyler Whittenberg
Position: Chief Counsel, Justice System Reform
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 
Twitter: @scsj

Legislation

Bill Number: SB 413

Type of Reform

Jail Removal Reform - Except that children charged with Class A-E felonies can be detained in a holdover facility for up to 72 hours. 

Year: 2019

Bill Number: SB 257

Type of Reform

Raise the Age Reform - Raised the age of juvenile jurisdiction from 16 to 18 years old, except for certain felonies. 

Year: 2017

Bill Number: SB 635

Type of Reform

Sentencing Reform - Eliminated juvenile life without parole for all youth convicted of second-degree murder, and required a person convicted of first-degree murder, and under the age of 18 at the time of the crime, to serve twenty-five years in prison before becoming parole eligible.

Year: 2012


Reports

Raise The Age: Bringing North Carolina’s Juvenile Justice System Into the 21st Century (2017)

This report from the John Locke Foundation endorses the recommendations from the previous year by the North Carolina Commission on the Administration of Law & Justice that the state should raise the age of juvenile court jurisdiction for all crimes except A-E felonies.

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North Carolina Commission on the Administration of Law & Justice. Interim Report: Criminal Investigation and Adjudication Committee (2016)

This official government report, produced by “an independent, multidisciplinary study group created to undertake a comprehensive evaluation of the judicial system and make recommendations” concluded that North Carolina should “raise the age of juvenile court jurisdiction to include youthful offenders aged 16 and 17 for all crimes except Class A through E felonies.”

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From Push Out to Lock Up: North Carolina’s Accelerated School-to-Prison Pipeline (2013)

This report presents a statewide overview of the various segments in North Carolina’s school-to-prison pipeline that move vulnerable students into the court system: underfunded schools, harsh discipline, increased policing of school hallways and a lack of adequate intervention programs or alternative education placements. The final section of the report proposes four recommendations to begin dismantling the school-to-pipeline: 1. Raise the age of juvenile court jurisdiction from 16 to 18 for youth who commit misdemeanor offenses; 2. Implement evidence-based reforms to ensure equitable treatment for all students in North Carolina; 3. Improve data collection and reporting requirements to better inform school administrators, parents, and policymakers; and 4. Establish a legislative task force on school discipline policies.

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Cost-Benefit Analysis of Raising the Age of Juvenile Jurisdiction in North Carolina (2011)

This report presents the results of the cost-benefit analysis of a plan to raise the age of juvenile jurisdiction in North Carolina to 18. The report concludes that the benefits of the plan outweigh the costs and that, from a cost-benefit standpoint, the policy change merits consideration.

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