Monday, September 12, 2011

I'm doing it for the children

Not my children, I hope, but other people's. Yes, today was my first day as a juvenile prosecutor and, as you'd imagine, I wandered around wide-eyed and confused. Luckily, I'm working with good folks whom I already know and who are more than prepared to take me in hand and show me how it works.

So far, I sat in on the morning docket, which is vaguely like our adult docket. The kids are represented by a lawyer, and often have a parent with them, as they discuss the resolution of their case(s). They use a lot of deferred prosecution and in-home probation, and stern but kindly words from the judge.

As I've said before, the system is set up to try and keep the kids' records clean, to give them treatment, counseling, and guidance rather than hammering them. After all, who amongst us hasn't strayed a little, eh? Well, okay, those of us locked away in boarding schools didn't have much chance to launch our shenanigans on the world, but I'm willing to believe if I'd been roaming the English countryside unrestrained, there'd have been a few cows tipped. . .

So I'm looking forward to learning a lot and maybe presenting you with some stories (heavily edited and disguised, of course) to show you how juvie justice works around here.

Wish me luck.


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