Process for moving juvenile crimes into adult court

Teenagers in Tennessee often act in immature ways. This is understandable since they have not yet reached adulthood. Unfortunately, some teens cross the line of the law and commit juvenile crimes. Many of these types of cases remain in juvenile court. However, some, depending on their severity, may be moved to adult court.

Recently, a freshman student was allegedly attacked at the field house in Grundy County by five of the school's football players. The five players have reportedly been charged with attempted aggravated rape. In another report, a 14-year-old has been accused of shooting someone. That teen has been charged with attempted second degree murder and aggravated domestic assault. These two cases have still remained in juvenile court.

A judge in Hamilton County believes that the goal of juvenile court should be to rehabilitate. His hope is that the youth do not have repeated offenses and will avoid having a criminal record. The judge reports that the system does work in many cases. However, he acknowledges that the district attorney may ask that some cases be moved to adult court.

Several things are considered before a case is moved from juvenile court into the adult system. The youth's past record is reviewed, as well as any previous efforts to rehabilitate. The court considers any prior activity to help a child since a move to adult court can have serious implications.

Juvenile crimes can include everything from shoplifting to assault to manslaughter. These are serious offenses and may have significant consequences, if a conviction occurs. When someone faces these types of charges, it would be wise to contact a Tennessee criminal defense lawyer. A strong legal team will make every effort to keep the case in juvenile court and strive to minimize the negative impact on someone's life.

Source:, "Process of transferring juvenile cases to adult court", Robyn Estabrook, Oct. 31, 2017

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