ARTICLE TAG

Human Rights Watch

5/15/2019

California Court Upholds Contested State Law that Keeps Youth Under 16 Out of Adult Prison

An appellate court in California has upheld the controversial 2018 law that prevents youth under the age of 16 from entering the adult criminal justice system. Since being signed into law in October 2018, district attorneys from a number of California counties have challenged Senate Bill 1391, arguing that it unconstitutionally amends Proposition 57, a 2016 ballot measure that gave judges the power to decide if a juvenile offender should be transferred to adult court.

3/1/2019

More than 100 Legal Experts Defend California’s New Juvenile Justice Law

As the controversy around SB 1391 — the new law in California that prevents youth younger than 16 years old from entering the adult criminal justice system — continues to play out in courts across the state, a group of legal scholars have issued a white paper defending the law’s constitutionality.

1/30/2019

Landmark Juvenile Justice Reform Challenged by California DAs

Several California district attorneys have launched an effort to roll back a landmark juvenile justice reform in California, a fight that both sides expect will ultimately be decided by the Supreme Court of California.

10/3/2017

This California Bill Would Erase Life Without Parole Sentences for Juveniles

A bill awaiting California Governor Jerry Brown’s signature would end mandatory, life-in-prison sentences for youth offenders in the state. Under the proposed law, Senate Bill 394, anyone under the age of 18 with a life sentence now or in the future would be entitled to a parole hearing by their 25th year of incarceration.

8/1/2016

California Bill Says a 10-Year-Old Cannot Waive Miranda Rights

Early one morning in 2011, a 10-year-old Riverside boy named Joseph woke up, went downstairs and grabbed a .357 revolver from his parents’ bedroom closet. He walked over to the living-room couch where his white supremacist father was sleeping off a night of drinking and shot him in the head.

Photo: Max Whittaker, Prime Collective

4/28/2016

California Juvenile Justice Advocates Push Ballot Measure

Juvenile-justice advocates in California are making a concerted push to gather signatures for a ballot measure that could decrease the number of juveniles tried in adult courts. In January, Governor Jerry Brown introduced the initiative for the November ballot as a way to redress several longstanding criminal justice issues at both the adult and juvenile levels.

5/26/2015

Holding on to Humanity

A social worker’s visit with youth offenders at Pelican Bay State Prison. By Wendy Smith The road to Pelican Bay State Prison led through majestic redwoods a stone’s throw from the stirring beauty of Pacific Ocean coastal waters.