The Instigator
luvx
Pro (for)
Tied
0 Points
The Contender
lubuscus
Con (against)
Tied
0 Points

Teens aged 14+ should be tried as adults

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 12/2/2013 Category: Society
Updated: 3 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 1,080 times Debate No: 41525
Debate Rounds (3)
Comments (4)
Votes (0)

 

luvx

Pro

The juvenile system should be abolished. Instead we can have:

Not guilty due to immaturity (no punishment, the crime does not go on the record)
Juvenile guilty (modified punishment, the crime does go on juvenile record)
Guilty (adult punishment, the crime does go on the record and can be seen by everyone, for those aged 14+)

Once you are 14 your maturity will be taken into account. At 14 you should be able to predict the consequences of your actions. The juvenile system is a free pass.
lubuscus

Con

First i would like to thank my opponent for this argument.

I believe the juvenile court system is a sound way to handle juvenile violations of criminal statute.

The government defines juvenile delinquency as an otherwise criminal act, but the criminal offender is under the age of 18. Most states regard children 14 and older as capable of forming criminal intent, so the majority of cases involving young people from 14 to 18 years of age are adjudicated in juvenile court. In certain circumstances, a juvenile can be tried in adult criminal court. However with that being said, there still should be a standard to abide by. If the bar is lowered to 14 it lowers the marginal view of who is viewed as an adult. If the crime is serious, it will be tried as an adult. There are 3 different cases for the juvenile system:

Juvenile delinquency cases. These cases involve minors who have committed crimes -- meaning that if the crime had been committed by an adult, the matter would be tried in regular criminal court.

Juvenile dependency cases. Cases involving minors who are abused or neglected by their parents or guardians -- called "juvenile dependency" cases -- are also heard in juvenile court. In a juvenile dependency case, the judge will ultimately decide whether or not a minor should be removed from a problematic home environment.

Cases involving status offenses. A status offense is a violation that only applies to minors. Examples include truancy (skipping school), curfew violations, running away, and underage drinking.

The course of action my opponent proposes are as follows

"Not guilty due to immaturity (no punishment, the crime does not go on the record)
Juvenile guilty (modified punishment, the crime does go on juvenile record)
Guilty (adult punishment, the crime does go on the record and can be seen by everyone, for those aged 14+)"

Issuing a "not guilty due to immaturity" court decision seems to contradict your initial assertion that the juvenile justice system is a "free pass." This proposed idea says that if someone convicted and claims "they are too immature" then the court will be overruled. This would be an expected reoccurring plea and there is no way to measure truth to this. Juvenile courts already factor this into their decisions anyway, so make it a "get out easy" card seems illogical.

Your proposed "juvenile guilty" proposition seems to resemble the original intent of the juvenile court system, therefore contradicts your argument against the juvenile court system and in ways would make court cases more complex because there would be debate about who gets this plea. When moving kids in adult court rooms, you are not only inviting them to adult court rooms, but an adult convicted criminal has the same chance as a 15 year old kid. Therefore it lowers the bar for adults.

Finally, the "guilty" proposition is technically already in effect in today"s juvenile court systems. Assuming this is the harshest penalty for your propositions, this would be similar to a juvenile ending up being tried as an adult.

My last words, juveniles can already be tried as adults. The only "getting off easy" is those who interpret the law. If a kid violates a criminal statute to such a severe degree, he or she will be tried as an adult.
Debate Round No. 1
luvx

Pro

1. Issuing a "not guilty due to immaturity" court decision seems to contradict your initial assertion that the juvenile justice system is a "free pass." This proposed idea says that if someone convicted and claims "they are too immature" then the court will be overruled.


"Not guilty due to immaturity" is for under 14s and immature over 14s.


2. Juvenile courts already factor this into their decisions anyway, so make it a "get out easy" card seems illogical.


Juveniles have fewer protections. They don't have a right to a public trial by jury, Rules about the admissibility of evidence are more lenient. They do not have the right to bail.


http://www.legalmatch.com...


http://criminal.findlaw.com...


3. When moving kids in adult court rooms, you are not only inviting them to adult court rooms, but an adult convicted criminal has the same chance as a 15 year old kid. Therefore it lowers the bar for adults.


All punishments are the same unless due to a brain impairment someone is less mature and as a result, could not fully predict the consequences of their actions. If some

lubuscus

Con

lubuscus forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 2
luvx

Pro

We have the insanity defense for adults, but that is for adults who cannot understand completely what they are doing. What about adults who partially understand what they are doing but don't have the complete ability to predict the consequences for their actions.

"When moving kids in adult court rooms, you are not only inviting them to adult court rooms, but an adult convicted criminal has the same chance as a 15 year old kid. Therefore it lowers the bar for adults."
Nope. It raises the bar for that 15 year old.
lubuscus

Con

lubuscus forfeited this round.
Debate Round No. 3
4 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 4 records.
Posted by luvx 3 years ago
luvx
I am debating that once you hit 14, you should be tried as an adult and receive an adult punishment.
Posted by luvx 3 years ago
luvx
Its not the crime that gets 'classified.' It's the maturity. If you don't have sufficient mental capacity for a new sentence then you will get a juvenile sentence (a modified 'lesser' sentence) and your crime will go on the juvenile record.
Posted by HostileBelief 3 years ago
HostileBelief
I agree with black cap and more troubling, do the same laws that adults are tried at? What are punishments for manslaughter? Smoking Weed?
Posted by Black_Cap 3 years ago
Black_Cap
Could you clarify what you are arguing for? Are you arguing for 14+ year old's should be tried as adults or that it should be replaced by your new system? And if it is your new system, then you should probably elaborate more, like how does a crime get categorized into one of those 3 categories?
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