Criminal Justice Capstone Research Papers

Document Type


Program of Study

Criminal Justice

Presentation Date



Juvenile Justice, Transfer Laws, Bindover, Juvenile Rehabilitation


The adult court system has increasingly become a court for violent juveniles over time. Despite all the age restraints and changes in the law, the criminal court has still charged juveniles as young as 11 years old. This practice is unconstitutional and immoral. The constitution gives all American citizens the right to due process of law and the right not to be deprived of life, liberty, or happiness in the Fifth, Eighth, and Fourteenth Amendments. Trying juveniles as adults violates all three of these proposed amendments. This practice also creates issues due to the lack of attention to juvenile competency. A brain does not have a fully developed frontal lobe until approximately age 21, leaving juveniles with a brain incapable of making decisions and analyzing situations as adults can do. When juveniles are being tried for their violent crimes, the criminal court needs to take the lack of brain development into account. Not only are they incapable of thought-provoking decision-making, but also, they are unable to understand the due process of law and rights they are deserved. A juvenile does not understand their rights in criminal court as adults understand them. Lastly, juveniles are vulnerable and impressionable and deserve rehabilitation tailored to their needs. The adult prison system is not suitable for juveniles, no matter their crime. To best serve the juveniles, changes need to be made to both the juvenile justice system and juvenile rehabilitation system. Once the juvenile rehabilitation program has been remodeled and more programs have been set in place, there will no longer be a need for juveniles to be tried as adults in criminal court. Keeping juveniles in the juvenile justice system will deter more juvenile offenders, reduce juvenile re-offending, and remove juveniles from criminal court.


Dr. Patrick Oliver

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