Juvenile's Legal Rights Being Violated

United States
August 9, 2007 2:14pm CST
My two teen-aged daughters recently got themselves into a legal delema. They were arrested for battery on a 20 year old "man" in our neighborhood. And I use the word man loosely. They have known this "man" since before he reached the magical age of manhood. There is a long history between them. Anyway, I was shocked and appauled when we went to court the next day and they were sentenced to secue detention for 21 days. When I asked to address the judge I was allowed one question. So I asked how he could sentence them with out knowing the full story, without even giving them the chance to speak for themselves, and without a trial of any sort. The judge enformed me that this was a very long process, they would be given thier day in court, but this was a very long process. When I tried to respond he had myself and my husband removed from the courtroom. I saught the advise of a lawyer first thing the next morning. Upon explaining the "history" behind this "battery", the lawyer shook his head. He said, "If I could get them in front of a jury, I have no doubt, I could get this thrown out. Unfortunatly, Juveniles are not allowed jury trials. The entire proceeding is in the hands of the judge." This seriously concerns me. Is this common practice across the US? How can we treat our children less than human. I thought the right to a trial of your piers was an enalianable right?!? The judge in question has a very checkered past, being sited for racist and male shovanistic comments. I work for the judicial system, and have had serious questions about it in the past, but now, I'm ashamed to admit that I'm part of this farse!
1 response
@whywiki (6070)
• Canada
9 Aug 07
I remember as a teen myself how unjust I thought the world was against teens. I see nothing has changed. I think it is ridicules that teenagers don't have the same rights as adults. I think a lot of 16 yr olds are more mature and intelligent than a lot of people in their 30's and 40's. Hopefully this will all work out for them and teach them a valuable lesson if nothing else.
• United States
9 Aug 07
Thank you for your wishes for the best.