When discussing juvenile offenders, there seems to be a distinct divide between how they should be treated. Some believe such young citizens should be treated with leniency in court while others completely disagree. This raises the question, “Should minors be treated with more leniency than their adult counterparts due to their youth?” Despite that the judicial system has flaws, treating juvenile offenders as adults in a court of law proves to be disadvantageous.
Juvenile crime has risen over the past years and has reached a height to where these young adults need help to return to what used to be a good, humble world where crime was a horrible action that no one would dare do. Young people have their whole life ahead of them and need to learn how to adapt themselves to a world where crime does exist but without themselves becoming a part of it. It is unimaginable how these children throw away their lives in a single action taken whether it is destructive to property or to other people. Although juveniles may not understand the severity of their crime, sentencing juveniles to mandatory life in prison is necessary because they have enough common knowledge to differentiate between right and wrong, the “underdeveloped mentality” is not yet proven to be true, and the victim’s family will never have their loved one near anymore; they will always be in pain.
As minors commit violent crimes without being held accountable, they can grow up to be real criminals and they can be very dangerous. Without a solid foundation of what is right and wrong, these minors will grow up believing that their actions are the norm. For this reason, minors need to be held accountable. They need to be taught that they cannot get away with their crimes. In 2007, courts with juvenile jurisdiction handled an estimated 1.7 million delinquency cases. Delinquency cases include vandalism, shoplifting, robbery, and murder. These are just some of the crimes minors can commit. This was up by forty-four percent from 1985. If a minor grows up believing that crime is acceptable, they will repeat the pattern. Without interrupting the pattern and making them accountable, these minors will always have a twisted sense of right and wrong. A sense of what is right and wrong is important and can be learned at any age. Minors learn very young, what...
It is almost a daily occurrence to turn on the nightly news and hear stories of ever increasing youths committing crimes. Even more alarming are the ages of these offenders. In Lake Station, Indiana, three first-grade students were plotting to kill a classmate. They even went so far as to draw a map of where the slaying was to take place. In California a six year old boy was charged with attempted murder of a 3 month old baby. In Southern California, three 17 year old girls were charged with false imprisonment, conspiracy, aggravated mayhem and torture when they held a 15-year-old runa...
The punishment of juvenile criminals, specifically those between the ages of 13 and 18, in the event that they commit crimes of murder, is not severe enough. Minors between these critical ages in the teenage life who commit crimes of murder should be prosecuted as adults in all situations and locations.
Every day violent crimes are being committed in the Unites States by juveniles, between the ages of twelve and fifteen, and are tried for these crimes in juvenile courts. The juveniles are being prosecuted in a juvenile court and are receiving a lesser sentence, than an adult for the violent crimes. Some people believe that teens should not be tried as an adult and should just be tried as a juvenile. Juveniles should be tried as an adult, in an adult court, when they are charged with a murder, a sexual offense, and having been previously tried and convicted of two prior offenses.
What Happened to Juvenile Justice? There is a great deal of controversy over the trying and sentencing of juvenile offenders today. Many will argue that because the severity of Juvenile crimes has risen, the severity of its consequences should rise; however, no matter how serious the crime is, juvenile offenders tried as adults receive far worse than they deserve. The majority of Juveniles tried as adults are hardly given any form of human rights.
The United States sentences more juveniles to death than any other nation in the world (Justice, 2009) and our juveniles are being sentenced as young as ten years of age. These are juveniles being tried as adults, and something has to change and change fast. The younger generation is supposed to be our future leaders. How will our juveniles or the citizens of this country prevail if this continues we won’t be able to because most of our future leaders will be prisoner. (B, 2005)
The juvenile justice system is influenced by neuroscience saying that teenagers brain are still developing. The study says teenager’s brain are different than adult’s. Greg Krikorian says 'Steinberg said, its findings did suggest that “thousands” of juveniles went to adult trial when they should not have because their ability to understand the proceedings was “seriously impaired”'. I agreed with the fact that teenagers brain are not fully develop but i disagree that juveniles should not be punished like adults are. Teenagers might not have all the knowledge the adults have but at current age, they should have know that violence is wrong.
Supreme Court ruling Graham v. Florida (2010) banned the use of life without parole for juveniles who committed non-homicide crimes, and Roper v. Simmons (2005) abolished the use of the death penalty for juvenile offenders. They both argued that these sentences violated the 8th Amendment, which prohibits cruel and unusual punishment. While these landmark cases made great strides for the rights of minors passing through the criminal justice system, they are just the first steps in creating a juvenile justice system that takes into consideration the vast differences between adolescents and adults. Using sociological (Butler, 2010) and legal (Harvard Law Review, 2010) documents, this essay will explicate why the next such step to be taken is entirely eliminating the use of the life without parole sentence for juveniles, regardless of the nature of the crime being charged.