In Illinois, the juvenile justice system for youth is different from the criminal system for adults.
- The juvenile justice system deals with children whose offenses occur between the ages of 10-17 (although youth charged with misdemeanors stay in juvenile court until age 18) .
- Supervision of juveniles can continue until age 21.
- Offenses are considered delinquent acts rather than crimes.
- Most hearings are not open to the public and are presided over by a Judge
- There is no jury trial in Juvenile Court.
- Youth are “adjudicated delinquent,” rather than “found guilty.”
Redeploy Illinois Frequently Used Terms:
Adjudication is the court process that determines if the juvenile committed the act for which he or she is charged. The term “adjudicated” is analogous to “convicted” and indicates that the court concluded the juvenile committed the act.
A Community Restorative Board is composed of a small group of community members who meet with juveniles sentenced by the court to participate in the process. The board discusses with the youth the offense and its negative consequences and develop a plan with the youth for repairing the harm done.
An act committed by a juvenile for which an adult could be prosecuted in a criminal court, but when committed by a juvenile is within the jurisdiction of the juvenile court. Delinquent acts include crimes against persons, crimes against property, drug offenses, and crimes against public order, when juveniles commit such acts.
Cases dismissed with no further action anticipated.
FFT is a short-term, high quality intervention program with an average of 12 sessions over a 3-4 month period. Services are conducted in both clinic and home settings. FFT is a strength-based model. At its core is a focus and assessment of those risk and protective factors that impact the adolescent and his or her environment.
MST is an intensive family- and community-based treatment program that focuses on addressing all environmental systems that impact chronic and violent juvenile offenders — their homes and families, schools and teachers, neighborhoods and friends. MST recognizes that each system plays a critical role in a youth’s world and each system requires attention when effective change is needed to improve the quality of life for youth and their families.
Cases in which youth were placed in a residential facility for delinquents or were otherwise removed from their homes and placed elsewhere.
Sentences for youth who are adjudicated delinquent under which they generally remain in the community, with their families, and follow rules set by the judge. Youth generally must report to a probation officer, attend school, follow the rules at home, and refrain from illegal drug use. Youth on probation may be ordered to complete counseling, do community service work, or follow a curfew.
A document filed in juvenile court alleging that a juvenile is a delinquent and asking that the court assume jurisdiction over the juvenile or asking that an alleged delinquent be waived to criminal court for prosecution as an adult.
Identifies categories of juveniles held in residential placement facilities.
- Committed – Includes juveniles in placement in the facility as part of a court ordered disposition. Committed juveniles include those whose cases have been adjudicated and disposed in juvenile court and those who have been convicted and sentenced in criminal court.
- Detained – Includes juveniles held prior to adjudication while awaiting an adjudication hearing in juvenile court, as well as juveniles held after adjudication while awaiting disposition or awaiting placement elsewhere. Also includes juveniles awaiting transfer to adult criminal court, or awaiting a hearing or trial in adult criminal court.
A nondelinquent/noncriminal offense; an offense that is illegal for underage persons, but not for adults.
- Curfew violation – Violation of an ordinance forbidding persons below a certain age from being in public places during set hours.
- Incorrigible, ungovernable – Being beyond the control of parents, guardians, or custodians.
- Running away – Leaving the custody and home of parents or guardians without permission and failing to return within a reasonable length of time.
- Truancy – Violation of a compulsory school attendance law.
- Underage drinking – Possession, use, or consumption of alcohol by a minor.
Thinking for a Change (T4C) is an integrated, cognitive behavioral change program for offenders that includes cognitive restructuring, social skills development, and development of problem solving skills. Thinking for a Change is designed for delivery to small groups in 25 lessons.
Washington Aggression Interruption Training is a cognitive behavioral intervention designed to assist youth with aggression, reduce anti-social behaviors, and offer an alternative of pro-social skills. WAIT includes training in social skills, anger control, and moral reasoning. WAIT is a group-based curriculum.
Youth Advocate Programs, Inc. (YAP) provides a community-based alternative to placement for Juvenile Probation Departments. YAP’s strength-based, family-focused program serves adjudicated juvenile offenders whose behavior and social circumstances put them at risk of placement in residential facilities.
he Youth Assessment and Screening Instrument is tool to assess risk, needs and protective factors in youth populations. This assessment helps probation and treatment staff develop case plans and measure progress.
(Many of these definitions were adapted from the OJJDP Statistical Briefing Book.)