Crime Busters Task Force Case Study

analytical Essay
1223 words
1223 words

The juvenile court is arguably the core of the juvenile justice system. Here is where juvenile offenders meet their fate of either being sent to a detention center, being transferred to adult court, or receiving an alternative disposition (i.e., electronic monitoring, intensive supervision, home detention, etc.). In this respect, the juvenile judge plays an integral role in the lives of youth. This is my role in the Crime Busters Task Force and is what I intend to delve into further after discussing the extensive crime problem in Baltimore, Maryland. The Crime Problem in the City of Baltimore Although crime in the United States has largely decreased since its spike in the early 1990s, the United States is still considered the most punitive …show more content…

In this essay, the author

  • Explains that juvenile court is the core of the juvenile justice system, where juvenile offenders are sent to a detention center, transferred to adult court, or received an alternative disposition.
  • Explains that the united states is considered the most punitive country in the world, with 2.2 million people currently in prison and jail. baltimore's murder rate is 7 times higher than the national average for several years.
  • Explains that the juvenile judge is responsible for deciding the legal issues in a case, resolves disputes, and intervenes in the lives of at-risk children and their families.
  • Compares baltimore city's crime rate with the state of maryland and the united states as a whole. the data for juvenile arrest rates is not much better.
  • Explains that incarceration is an ineffective way to curb crime and may contribute to more crime occurring.
  • Argues that incarceration, the most costly alternative for taxpayers, does little to prevent recidivism and often has the opposite effect, driving juveniles deeper into criminal behavior.
  • Argues that many judges ignore and/or are unaware of these findings and believe that incarceration is still the best option for controlling youth offenders.

She presides over the legal issues in court and resolves whatever disputes exist. She also has to decide whether or not certain facts in a case are true and must act accordingly. What makes the juvenile court judge different than the judge of an adult criminal court is that the juvenile judge intervenes in the lives of at-risk children and their families (Mitchell, 1996). In some cases, a judge has to decide if a child should be removed from a parent, what services should be provided for the family, and whether or not a child should be returned to his family and the community or placed in another, more suitable environment (Edwards, 1992). Additionally, the judge ensures that all parties appearing in court are aware of their constitutional rights (i.e., right to counsel, right to a hearing, etc.). Finally, she has the authority to waive a juvenile case to adult court. Nevertheless, whatever decision the judge takes, actions are always done in the best interest of the child. In my specific position, I believe that when deciding what is best for the child, it is important to keep in mind that the child should be placed in the care of their family/community unless doing so would be detrimental to his or her …show more content…

However, research has shown that incarceration does more harm than good as it not only is an ineffective way to curb crime, but it also may contribute to more crime occurring (Currie, 2013). This is evidenced by a study that was conducted in Kansas City, Missouri in 2002 by researchers Cassia Spohn and David Holleran. In this study, the researchers followed the lives of felony offenders who were sentenced in 1993. Their goal was to see how offenders fared in a custodial vs. a noncustodial setting. They found that offenders who were sentenced to prison, were twice as likely to be incarcerated for a new crime (Currie, 2013). In fact, they were “five to six times more likely to be rearrested and recharged with a new crime than all other offenders of any kind” (Currie, 2013, p. 201). A similar result has been found with juvenile offenders as indicated by a recent New York Times

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