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What are the pros and cons of trying juveniles as adults in court? Show more Show less
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The criminal justice system operates with the understanding that a juvenile’s action may not be the same as an adult’s - and, instead, that the juvenile might merit unique consideration under the law - and that punishment should perhaps be tailored towards development and reform. However, this has resulted in controversy. Should everyone be sentenced equally regardless of their age? Or should society recognise that juveniles are too young to fully consider the consequences of their actions to be tried as adults?

Juveniles should not be tried as adults in court Show more Show less

Anyone under the age of 18 is a child, and should not be tried as adults. Subjecting them can have multiple repercussions in the present and future. It is not fair for juveniles to be subjected to have the same expectations as adults,
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Juveniles face a lower chance of rehabilitation if they are tried as adults

Trying juveniles as adults can delay the process of them getting help, which could harm them in the future. Not trying them as adults can help rehabilitate the child and decrease the likelihood of reoffending.
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The Argument

If juveniles were tried in adult courts, they lose the chance to be rehabilitated. Instead of trying them in adult courts, their age margin should be respected. This argument stems from the fact that the human brain does not fully develop until the mid-20s. If said juvenile commits a crime, there is no guarantee that they were rational at the time of the incident. Juveniles who have been prosecuted in adult courts are more likely to be rearrested than their adult counterparts.[1] Research and data collected from 15 states in the U.S. show that juveniles who were tried in adult courts were rearrested 82 percent of the time, and adults were rearrested 16 percent less.[2] Juveniles tried and prosecuted in juvenile courts are much more likely to benefit from the resources, such as counseling made available by the juvenile system. Whereas if they were prosecuted in adult court, they would be deprived of their young and impactful development, or even worse, be exposed to adult offenders.[2]

Counter arguments

Juveniles take advantage of the juvenile justice system, which is designed to provide individualized rehabilitation for juveniles who commit minor crimes such as vandalism or shoplifting. If other more serious crimes such as murder or rape are committed, they should be held accountable, whatever their age. Juveniles may be more likely to commit horrible crimes because they don't fear the verdict if they are tried as juveniles/children.[3]

Proponents

Premises

Rejecting the premises

References

  1. https://www.splcenter.org/news/2014/10/30/children-tried-adults-face-danger-less-chance-rehabilitation
  2. https://www.americanbar.org/groups/litigation/committees/childrens-rights/articles/2016/should-juveniles-be-charged-as-adults/
  3. https://www.appohigh.org/ourpages/auto/2016/3/16/38572502/Juveniles%20Tried%20as%20Adults.pdf
This page was last edited on Wednesday, 30 Sep 2020 at 01:19 UTC

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