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August 4, 2013

Essay on Juvenile Intake

Juvenile Intake
The dramatic escalation of violence committed by and against people is shocking (Eron et al., 1994). Although according to Federal Bureau of Investigation, the murder rate in the year 2009 dropped almost 7.2 percent in comparison to the murder rate of 2008. Similarly crime rate of crimes like rape and assault had been decreased up to 4.2 percent each and crime rates of robbery and burglary fell by 1.7 percent and 4.2 percent respectively (Federal Bureau of Investigation, 2009) but still the violence among the youth has increased sharply.
There is no simple explanation for the presence of aggression, nor is there any obvious, easy way to reduce it. The fundamental basis of violence is absolutely clear: the human capacity for aggression.
Juvenile Justice System
The system of justice is almost entirely different for Juvenile as compared to the adults. Juvenile intake started from the first information which law enforcement agency receives for a juvenile to commit crime. During investigation the law enforcement officer has to assess whether the evidence is sufficient for proving the juvenile guilty of the crime or not. If the officer finds the evidence enough to find the juvenile guilty of the crime, he will call the juvenile probation officer and send him the information of the crime and then also send this information to district attorney for filing the petition.  In the process of filing a petition, juvenile may either be released after giving some counseling, or handed over to the community resources or referred for juvenile intake. 
Once the decision of juvenile intake is made, juvenile enters into the juvenile justice system. First either the prosecutor or the court will decide whether to file the case in juvenile court or in the adult court. Before starting the formal hearing of the case, the court will try to find other solutions like whether the crime committed by the Juvenile is serious or not, or the evidence of the crime, juvenile’s previous criminal record and whether rehabilitation measures are successful in the case or not. Depending on these factors the court will decide whether to dismiss the case, handle the case informally or order the proper hearing of the case. According to the statistics more than 25% of the young offenders are dismissed due to non-severity of the crime or they are first time offenders.  
Juvenile justice system is different from adult criminal system is that in juvenile justice system court also provides the option of rehabilitation. Usually, in juvenile courts the prime objective is not punishment but rehabilitation; thus, the process is rather short. 
Role of intake officer
Juvenile Probation officers are provided by the State to guide and supervise the offenders age between 10 to 17, which are referred to them through law enforcement agencies. The responsibility of intake officer is to examine the case of youth offender and file petition of the appropriate case to the court.
Probation officers are also responsible for the appropriate probation of such juveniles who are placed on probation by the court. These officers manage and monitor that juvenile probation is abide by the rules, juvenile get proper court related services and referred to appropriate community services, schools or training or rehabilitation programs.
Scenario One
            In this case the kid was charged with two charges; one count of assault with a deadly weapon and one charge of possession of a deadly weapon. In this case, the kid would enter into juvenile justice system. The kid has no previous record of criminal activities and he may commit this crime because presently due to watching violent movies at media and playing video games, youth may feel adrenaline, emotion and power and when they stop playing they feel incomplete and thus involve in violent activities. Keeping all this in mind, the judge may give decision to dismiss the case and refer the kid for rehabilitation measures.  

Scenario Two
            In Knoxville, Tennessee, an 11 year old boy, Kenny was taken into custody by police on the charge of the theft of a bike from a neighbor’s child. In this probation officer may decide that the charge is not serious enough to file a petition against Kenny because the kid has no previous record and he was involved in the theft because his parents did not afford a new bike.
            Thus, instead of filing a petition against the kid, the probation officer may refer the kid for some rehabilitation measures which would make Kenny realize that he committed a crime which is legally and morally prohibited.

Scenario Three
            A 9 year old boy from Iowa was held by the police officers because he is driving his family car. Although driving is prohibited without driving license and reaching the proper age but the charge is not very serious.
            In my opinion police officer would not press a charge against the kid and warn him and his family of not doing such thing again.  
Eron, L. D. Gentry, J. H. and Schlegal, P. (1994), Reasons to hope: A psychosocial perspective
 on violence and youth, Washington, DC: American psychological Association.

Federal Bureau of Investigation (2009). Crime in the United States. Retrieved on 2nd December
2010 from


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