AN ACT TO RAISE THE AGE OF JUVENILE JURISDICTION TO INCLUDE SIXTEEN- AND SEVENTEEN-YEAR-OLDS WHO HAVE COMMITTED MISDEMEANOR OFFENSES; TO PROVIDE A VICTIM THE OPPORTUNITY TO REQUEST REVIEW OF DECISION NOT TO FILE A PETITION; TO INCREASE THE INFORMATION AVAILABLE ON JUVENILES TO LAW ENFORCEMENT AND FOR COURT PROCEEDINGS; TO AUTHORIZE SCHOOL-JUSTICE PARTNERSHIPS STATEWIDE TO REDUCE SCHOOL-BASED REFERRALS TO THE JUVENILE COURT SYSTEM; TO REQUIRE REGULAR JUVENILE JUSTICE TRAINING FOR LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS; AND TO ESTABLISH THE JUVENILE JURISDICTION ADVISORY COMMITTEE.
Amends the definition of delinquent juvenile in GS 7B-1501(7) to add the term also includes any juvenile who, while less than 18 years of age but at least 16 years of age, commits a misdemeanor or infraction under State law or under an ordinance of local government, excluding violation of the motor vehicle laws, or who commits indirect contempt by a juvenile as defined in GS 5A-31. Currently, the term is defined as any juvenile who, while less than 16 years of age but at least 6 years of age, commits a crime or infraction under State law or under an ordinance of local government, including violation of the motor vehicle laws, or who commits indirect contempt by a juvenile as defined in GS 5A-31. Adds and defines the term victim to mean any individual or entity against whom a crime or infraction is alleged to have been committed by a juvenile based on reasonable grounds that the alleged facts are true. Specifies that for purposes of Article 17 of this Chapter, the term may also include a parent, guardian, or custodian of a victim under the age of 18 years.
Amends GS 7B-1601, which provides for jurisdiction of delinquent juveniles, to establish that when the district court obtains jurisdiction over a juvenile alleged to be delinquent for an offense committed while the juvenile was at least 16 years of age but less than 17 years of age, jurisdiction continues until terminated by an order of the court or until the juvenile reaches the age of 19 years. Further provides that if the offense was committed while the juvenile was at least 17 years of age, jurisdiction continues until terminated by order of the court or until the juvenile reaches the age of 20 years. Further provides that when delinquency proceedings for a juvenile alleged to be delinquent for an offense committed while the juvenile was at least 16 years of age but less than 17 years of age cannot be concluded before the juvenile reaches the age of 19 years, the court retains jurisdiction for the sole purpose of dismissing the petition. Provides that when a delinquency proceeding for a juvenile alleged to be delinquent for an offense committed while the juvenile was at least 17 years of age cannot be concluded before the juvenile reaches the age of 20 years, the court retains jurisdiction for the sole purpose of dismissing the petition. Makes clarifying changes to existing subsections (b) and (c) concerning jurisdiction over a juvenile and delinquency proceedings to clarify that those existing provisions pertain to a juvenile alleged to be delinquent for an offense committed prior to the juvenile reaching the age of 16 years.
Provides that when the court has not obtained jurisdiction over a juvenile before the juvenile reaches the age of 18, for a felony and any related misdemeanors the juvenile allegedly committed on or after the juvenile's thirteenth birthday and prior to the juvenile's eighteenth birthday (was, sixteenth birthday), the court has jurisdiction for the sole purpose of conducting proceedings pursuant to Article 22 of GS Chapter 7B and either transferring the case to superior court for trial as an adult or dismissing the petition.
Amends GS 7B-1604(a) to establish that any juvenile, including a juvenile who is under the jurisdiction of the district court, who commits a criminal offense on or after the date the juvenile reaches the age of 18 years (currently, who commits a criminal offense on or after the juvenile's sixteenth birthday), is subject to prosecution as an adult.
Amends GS 7B-2200, concerning the transfer of jurisdiction of a juvenile to superior court, to limit the transfer of jurisdiction of a juvenile under this statute to when the juvenile was at least 13 years of age but less than 16 years of age (was, if the juvenile was 13 years of age or older) at the time the juvenile allegedly committed an offense that would be a felony if committed by an adult.
Amends GS 7B-2506, which sets out alternatives the court exercising jurisdiction over a juvenile who has been adjudicated delinquent may use, to clarify that the options a judge can choose in subdivision (1) can be used in the case of any juvenile under the age of 18 years who needs more adequate care or supervision or who needs placement. Additionally, limits the alternative allowing a judge to excuse a juvenile from compliance with compulsory school attendance law when suitable alternative plans can be arranged to only allow the option if the juvenile is under the age of 16 years.
Amends GS 7B-2507, concerning delinquency history levels, to establish and assign point levels for a juvenile's prior convictions that are to be added to the points assigned to each of the juvenile's prior adjudications or convictions and probation status to determine the delinquency history level of a delinquent juvenile. Assigns specified points for prior convictions based on the class of felony or misdemeanor, and includes points specifically for prior misdemeanor convictions for impaired driving, impaired driving in a commercial vehicle, and death by vehicle. Makes conforming changes.
Amends GS 7B-2513, concerning commitment of a delinquent juvenile to the Division of Juvenile Justice (Division), to break down the existing language of subsection (a) into several subsections, and limit application of the existing term limits to a juvenile who committed the offense prior to reaching the age of 16 years. Additionally establishes that for an offense a juvenile committed while the juvenile was at least 16 years of age but less than 17 years of age, the term of commitment to the Division for placement in a youth development center cannot exceed the juvenile's nineteenth birthday. Provides that for an offense the juvenile committed while the juvenile was at least 17 years of age, the term of commitment cannot exceed the juvenile's twentieth birthday.
Amends GS 7B-2515(a) to require the Division to notify the juvenile and the juvenile's parent, guardian, or custodian of the Division's intention not to release the juvenile who was committed before the juvenile reached the age of 16 years (previously did not specify the juvenile must be committed prior to reaching the age of 16 years) prior to the juvenile's eighteenth birthday, or if the Division determines the commitment should be continued beyond the maximum commitment period as set out in GS 7B-2516(a1) (as amended by this act; conforming change, was GS 7B-2513(a)).
Amends GS 7B-2603(b) to provide that pending release, a juvenile is to be detained pursuant to GS 7B-2204 (right to pretrial release, detention). Eliminates existing provisions concerning the detention of a juvenile pending release.
Makes conforming changes to GS 5A-31(a) (offense of contempt by a juvenile), GS 5A-34(b) (criminal and civil contempt applicable to specified minors), GS 14-316.1 (contributing to delinquency and neglect by parents and others), and GS 143B-805(6) (defining juvenile for use in provisions concerning the Division of Juvenile Justice).
Adds to the duties of the Division of Juvenile Justice set out in GS 143B-806(b) the duty to provide for the transportation to and from any State or local juvenile facility of any person under the jurisdiction of the juvenile court for any purpose required by GS Chapter 7B or upon order of the court.
Effective December 1, 2019, and applies to offenses committed on or after that date.
Amends GS 7B-1703(c), requiring the juvenile court counselor to notify the complainant with the reasons for the counselor's decision not to file a juvenile petition upon evaluation of a complaint, to require the juvenile court counselor to also notify the victim, if the complainant is not the victim, immediately in writing with specific reasons for the counselor's decision, whether or not legal sufficiency was found, and whether the matter was closed or diverted and retained. Additionally requires the notice to include the victim's right to have the decision reviewed by the prosecutor. Makes conforming changes to include the victim's right to require review by the prosecutor and the prosecutor's duty to review the determination that the petition should not be filed under GS 7B-1704 and GS 7B-1705.
Effective July 1, 2017, applying to all complaints filed on or after that date.
Amends GS 7B-3001 by adding to the items that must be included in a juvenile court counselor's record, to also include the juvenile's delinquency record and consultations with law enforcement that did not result in a filed complaint. Adds the requirement that, upon request, a juvenile court counselor share with a law enforcement officer sworn in this state any information from the counselor's record related to a juvenile's delinquency record or prior consultations with law enforcement. Prohibits a law enforcement officer from obtaining copies of any part of the record and requires shared information to be withheld from public inspection. Effective July 1, 2017.
By July 1, 2018, directs the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) to expand access to its automated electronic information management system for juvenile courts, JWise, to include prosecutors and attorneys representing juveniles in juvenile court proceedings. Limits this access to examining electronic records related to juvenile delinquency information. Prohibits other information in JWise, such as any records pertaining to abuse, neglect, and dependency or termination of parental rights, from being made available to a prosecutor or juvenile's attorney through JWise. Directs the AOC to develop a statewide search function for all users of the JWise computer system to improve tracking information of juvenile records by July 1, 2018.
Amends the duties of the Administrative Officer of the Courts by adding the duty to prescribe policies and procedures for chief district court judges to establish school-justice partnerships with local law enforcement agencies, local boards of education, and local school administrative units with the goal of reducing in-school arrests, out-of-school suspensions, and expulsions.
Amends GS 17C-6 to amend the powers of the North Carolina Criminal Justice Education and Training Standards Commission (Commission) as follows. Adds to the standards that the Commission establishes for entry level employment as a criminal justice officer to also require education and training on juvenile justice matters that includes four specified components. Adds to the in-service training standards for criminal justice officers that the Commission develops to also require training on juvenile justice issues that must include the same four specified components. Also adds the duty of establishing minimum standards and levels of training for certification of instructors for the required juvenile justice training.
Amends GS 17E-4 to amend the powers of the North Carolina Sheriffs' Education and Training Standards Commission (Commission) as follows. Adds to the standards that the Commission establishes for entry level employment as an officer to also require training on juvenile justice matters that includes four specified components. Adds to standards that the Commission establishes for in-service training for justice officers to also require training on juvenile justice matters that includes four specified components. Also adds the duty of establishing minimum standards and levels of training for certification of instructors for the required juvenile justice training.
Requires that both of the above Commissions work with the Division of Adult Correction and Juvenile Justice of the Department of Public Safety in developing and implementing the required education and training.
Establishes the Juvenile Jurisdiction Advisory Committee (Committee) within the Division of Adult Correction and Juvenile Justice. Provides for the membership of the Committee, consisting of 21 members as specified. Requires appointments to the Committee to be made no later than October 1, 2017. Sets forth parameters for filling vacancies on the Committee and the provisions for Committee meetings. Requires the initial meeting of the Committee to be called on or before November 1, 2017. Requires cooperation by government agencies and directs the Committee to consult with appropriate State departments, agencies, and board representatives. Sets out the duties of the Committee, which include developing a specific plan for the implementation of any changes in the juvenile justice system that would be required in order to extend jurisdiction in delinquency matters and proceedings to include 16- and 17-year-old persons within the juvenile justice system.
Directs the Committee to submit an interim report by April 1, 2018, to the General Assembly, with copies to the Joint Legislative Oversight Committee on Justice and Public Safety and to the Appropriation Committees on Justice and Public Safety of both houses. Requires the Committee to submit additional interim reports with updates on the planning steps completed annually by January 15. Directs a final report on the implementation of this act and the Committee's findings and recommendations by January 15, 2023, to the General Assembly and Governor. Terminates the Committee on February 1, 2023, or upon the filing of its final report, whichever occurs earlier.
Provides that the Committee can apply for, receive, and accept grants of non-State funds or other contributions as appropriate to assist in the performance of its duties.
Unless otherwise provided, the act is effective when it becomes law. Provides that prosecutions or delinquency proceedings initiated for offenses committed before any particular section of the act becomes effective are not abated or affected by the act and that the statutes that are in effect on the dates the offenses are committed remain applicable to those prosecutions.
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