New Orleans Advocate

In New Orleans, ‘Eligible’ Delinquents Increasingly Routed to Adult Courts, Prisons

More Youths Routed to Adult Court

KATY RECKDAHL| SPECIAL TO THE ADVOCATE [ original article includes video ]
March 31, 2015

… In Louisiana, anyone 17 or older is an adult in the eyes of the law. Anyone younger is tried in Juvenile Court — with some exceptions.

Jeffrey Butts, director of the Research & Evaluation Center at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, said he believes the prosecution of youths as adults should be used when it’s clear a juvenile will likely continue to commit serious crime. Otherwise, it shouldn’t, he said.

“It basically destroys a person’s future,” Butts said. “We know it makes things worse; but we use it if it’s necessary to prevent something even worse.”

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