Law Offices of Elling & Elling
Call Us Now For A Free Consultation 301-637-0281 866-470-5187

Montgomery County's 'teen court' program

Montgomery County was the first county in Maryland to begin a teen court program concerning teenagers accused of a variety of juvenile crimes such as theft or other property crimes, drug possession and underage drinking. It has now been 15 years since this program was implemented, and it involves having other teenagers serve on a jury when one of their peers is charged with an offense.

The program concerns teenagers that have been arrested between the ages of 12 to 17 years of age. The sanctions that the teen jury members decide upon need to be completed by the alleged offender within 60 days of the verdict. Approximately 4,000 cases have been tried in this manner since 1997.

Whether such a program has been a success depends on one's point of view. However, it at least shows that court officials are trying to be imaginative in their solution to youths and crime.

When dealing with young people that have been arrested, there is danger in adults overreacting to what has occurred. Though one should be hesitant to label such purported acts as low level or minor crimes, the manner in which teenage offenders are handled needs to differ from that of adult offenders.

When a young person is charged with a crime, it is always a good idea to contact an experienced criminal defense attorney accustomed to dealing with such matters involving youth. If such behavior can be dealt with appropriately while the individual is still a youth, the chances of this individual continually to reoffend into his or her adult years is greatly reduced.

Source: The Washington Post, "Montgomery County's teen court, where teens decide punishment for peers, celebrating 15 years," May 23, 2012

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For A Response

Contact Us Today

If you would like to schedule a free initial consultation with either of our lawyers, we welcome you to contact us online or to call us toll free at 866-470-5187 or locally in our Gaithersburg office at 301-637-0281.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close

Privacy Policy

Office Location

443 N. Frederick Avenue
Gaithersburg, MD 20877

Toll Free: 866-470-5187
Phone: 301-637-0281
Fax: 301-921-9327
Map & Directions

Free Consultations