Juvenile Court Characteristics

A juvenile is a person who was less than 17 years old but more than 10 years old when he or she committed an act defined as a delinquent act or a conduct in need of supervision. This is an act if committed by an adult could lead to imprisonment. A conduct in need of supervision (CINS) is a conduct that if committed by an adult could result in a fine.

Juvenile Court Characteristics in Texas
According to Roberts (2004), when a juvenile has been found to have committed a CINS or delinquent conduct, heshe is adjudicated. Texas juvenile board is in charge of the juvenile justice operations. Its made up of district court judges and country court judges. The juvenile board decides which court that will be used as a juvenile court in the county. There are different courts that are involved district, Constitutional County or county courts.

District courts are courts of general jurisdiction constitutional county courts have concurrent authority with district judges and county courts may have concurrent authority with district judges or it may vary according to the statute that formed them (Zimring, 2005).

When a juvenile has been found with an adjudicated conduct, the following is done the person can be placed on probation, sent to the Texas youth commission (TYC) with an indeterminable sentence. However, this can only be done in victims of felony offences or it can be referred to the TYC with a determined sentence for certain offences. Juveniles put on probation and not sent to the TYC are supposed to be released by the time they turn 18. When sent to the TYC with an indeterminate verdict, the victims are released by the time they turn 19 and when sent to the TYC with a determined sentence, they can be transferred to an adult court depending on their behavior while in the TYC programs (Myers, 2001).

If the juvenile is put on probation, the judge orders the juvenile to live with a responsible adult and gives the conditions that are to be followed. The conditions may range from a curfew, undergoing counseling or the juvenile may be required to attend a school. If the conditions given are not kept by the adult, the court may order the adult responsible to pay a fine or be imprisoned (Feld, 1999).

Many juveniles are found to commit crimes that if they were adults, they might have been convicted or fined. To deal with such cases, the Texas courts have come up with modes of dealing the culprits.


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