Juvenile Justice Bill Passes In Md. House Of Delegates On Friday

It must be reconciled with similar legislation from the Senate.

Delegate Kris Fair

Annapolis, Md (KM) Legislation to improve accountability and rehabilitation in Maryland’s juvenile justice system passed the House Delegates on Friday by 126-to-6 vote. Frederick County Delegate Kris Fair says it had “overwhelmingly bipartisan support.” “As the Judiciary Committee put forth really what seemed a balanced approach for dealing with juveniles age ten to 12,”¬† Fair says.

The bill would divert juvenile offenders between the ages of ten to 12 to¬† ¬†diversionary programs for a first offense rather than put them through the juvenile justice system. “Which include non-profits and other associations to help to rehabilitate young people instead of just incarceration,” he said.

“There are some extreme cases where the juvenile justice system will be engaged. But those are extreme violent offenses,:” says Fair.

The bill must be reconciled with a similar measure in the Senate.

These bills were drafted following increases in serious crimes in Maryland committed by juveniles such as auto theft and firearms offenses.

By Kevin McManus