Drawing the line on when juvenile offenders should be tried as adults is a very difficult situation, although it is not always fair. What makes a juvenile different than an adult? Should a child's upbringing be taken in to consideration when figuring out how these cases should be resolved? What is being done to cut back on the number of juvenile crimes happening in the United States today? What punishments are actually working?.
Children and adults share a lot of the same rights, but when it comes to crime punishments they are treated very differently. A juvenile is typically a person under the age of eighteen; but what makes children under the age of eighteen an adult in the court of law? According to a website stating juvenile laws and rights:.
"When a child commits a serious crime such as murder, theft, battery, drug possession, and weapon possession, they may no longer be considered a 'little kid.' When entering the court, all sixteen-year-olds charged with crime go to adult court and can be sentenced to adult prison. Children under the age of sixteen go to juvenile court. Youths, fourteen, and fifteen year olds who commit serious crimes (robbery, larceny, assault, kidnapping and arson) will be transferred to adult court, where they can receive the same punishment for a crime as an adult. There is an exception in murder cases, where persons under eighteen years of age may not be sentenced to death." (http://russelllibrary.org/youth/law.htm.).
Although, this is not always the case:.
"Nathaniel Brazil, was the 13-year-old who shot his teacher, he was sentenced to 28 years in prison. He will be more than 40 years old when he is released. Because the jury concluded that the killing was not premeditated, it found the 13-year-old guilty of second-degree murder. If Brazil had been convicted of first-degree murder; he would have spent the rest of his life in prison" (http://www.njsbf.com/njsbf/student/eagle/fall01-1.