Tag: Juvenile Justice
  • Raise the Age and Enforcement of Domestic Violence Protective Orders and Civil No-Contact Orders

    The Juvenile Justice Reinvestment Act and its subsequent corresponding legislation raised the age of juvenile jurisdiction to 18 for most offenses committed at ages 16 or 17 that would otherwise be crimes. S.L. 2017-57, §§ 16.D.4.(a)-16.D.4.(tt) and S.L. 2019-186. Last summer, the legislature enacted changes to the criminal law to ensure that minors who fall outside of raise the age and continue to be tried as adults are not housed in adult jails. S.L. 2020-83, §§ 8.(a)-8.(p).  While it may feel like these changes must mean that the age of 18 is now consistently the legal demarcation for being treated as an adult, the law continues to use the age of 16 as a defining line in some instances. For example, Chapter 50B (Domestic Violence) and Chapter 50C (Civil No-Contact Orders) continue to provide that domestic violence protective orders (DVPOs) and Civil No-Contact Orders can be obtained against youth once they reach the age of 16. This blog addresses how enforcement of these orders against youth who are ages 16 and 17 is affected by raise the age and by the removal of minors from jails. Continue Reading

  • Juvenile Justice System Impacts in the First Year of Raise the Age

    The Juvenile Justice Reinvestment Act (JJRA), which raised the age of juvenile court jurisdiction to include youth who commit offenses at ages 16 and 17, went into effect on December 1, 2019. What impacts have been realized in the juvenile justice system as a result? The Juvenile Jurisdiction Advisory Committee (JJAC), created by the JJRA, submitted its required interim report to the General Assembly on January 15, 2021. The report provides many details about the first year of implementation as well as JJAC recommendations for legislative amendments and ongoing budgetary needs. This blog provides a summary of some of the trends during the first year of raise the age implementation as detailed in the report. Continue Reading

  • In Search of Youth Voice: Were You or Someone You Know Involved with Juvenile Court in N.C.?

    Much of our work at the School of Government is focused on creating educational materials for professionals who work in North Carolina’s juvenile court—especially judges and attorneys. We want to share the voices of those who are affected the most – the juveniles. Assistant Professor Jacqui Greene and I are starting a video project to give voice to the experience of juveniles who have been involved in the juvenile justice and/or child welfare systems. This post provides some information on what we hope to do and how to contact us if you or someone you know is interested in participating. Continue Reading

  • Satisfying Conditions of Pretrial Release When in Juvenile Detention

    Two changes in the law have led to a new phenomenon—the need for youth under the age of 18 to satisfy conditions of pretrial release while being confined in a juvenile detention facility. First, the Juvenile Justice Reinvestment Act (JJRA) raised the age of juvenile court jurisdiction for offenses committed at ages 16 and 17 on or after December 1, 2019. The JJRA includes a broad mandatory transfer provision, requiring that many felony matters shift from juvenile to superior court jurisdiction. G.S. 7B-2200.5(a). When that happens, the rules of criminal procedure (including those governing pretrial release) apply rather than the rules for juvenile cases. Second, Part II of Session Law 2020-83 required that the few minors who continue to be processed as adults in the criminal system from the outset of their cases be held in juvenile detention instead of adult jails. The release of minors subject to criminal rather than juvenile jurisdiction is governed by the usual criminal process for setting and satisfying conditions for pretrial release. Those conditions sometimes require posting a bond. But juvenile detention facilities are not equipped to process bonds. So how does this work? This post will review the circumstances in which a youth confined in juvenile detention may need to post bond, the impediments to doing so, and potential ways to address those problems. Continue Reading

  • Juvenile Justice Pandemic Lessons

    The Juvenile Jurisdiction Advisory Committee (JJAC) met on May 15th. The meeting began with a presentation from William Lassiter, Deputy Secretary for Juvenile Justice. While the goal of the presentation was to provide data on trends since implementation of raise the age and the resulting resource needs, the presentation included information and data about juvenile justice system trends during this unprecedented pandemic. The data left me wondering—can changes in juvenile justice system utilization during the pandemic teach us lessons for the functioning of the system outside of a pandemic? Continue Reading

  • New Juvenile Justice Resource at the Administrative Office of the Courts

     The Office of General Counsel of the North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts (NCAOC) provides advice and counsel to judicial officials and other NC Judicial Branch employees. They do not provide legal advice to the public or to litigants on either side of a court case. In addition to providing legal counsel, the Office of General Counsel assists Judicial Branch committees, task forces and work groups with the development and management of procedures, programs, and strategies that support the judicial community. They also review, monitor, and summarize legislative bills.

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