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Juvenile Justice
Juvenile Justice
Here at Advocates for Abandoned Adolescents we do our absolute best to ensure that the voices of incarcerated youth and their families get allocated a responsible reform to America's Juvenile Justice. Our Truth about youth Campaign seeks to hear from youth that have been prosecuted upto the age of 18yrs as an adult, as well as their family and friends, to collect their stories in order to understand their experiences, perspectives and recomendations for change in the Adult criminal Justice System. Advocates for Abandoned Adolescents will use this information to identify patterns and trends that are worthy of further research that are specific to harmful effects on adolescents in the adult criminal justice system.
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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Mo. teen gets life with possible parole in killing

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Mo. teen gets life with possible parole in killing | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A central Missouri teenager who confessed to strangling, cutting and stabbing a 9-year-old girl because she wanted to know how it felt to kill someone was sentenced Wednesday to life in prison with the possibility of parole.

Alyssa Bustamante, 18, pleaded guilty in January to second-degree murder and armed criminal action in the October 2009 slaying of Elizabeth Olten in St. Martins, a small rural town west of Jefferson City.

The judge also ordered the teen to serve a consecutive 30-year term in the armed criminal action charge.
Bustamante was 15 years old when she confessed to strangling Elizabeth, repeatedly stabbing her in the chest and slicing the girl's throat. She led police to the shallow grave where she had concealed Elizabeth's body under a blanket of leaves in the woods behind their neighborhood.

With her hands shackled to her waist and her feet shackled together, Bustamante rose and faced Elizabeth's mother and siblings before she was sentenced Wednesday.
"I know words," she said, pausing to take a deep breath and struggling to compose herself, "can never be enough and they can never adequately describe how horribly I feel for all of this."
She added: "If I could give my life to get her back I would. I'm sorry."
Elizabeth's mother, Patty Preiss, who on the first day of Bustamante's sentencing hearing called her "an evil monster" and declared that she "hated her" sat silently, staring forward during Bustamante's apology.
The Olten family declined to comment to reporters, as did Bustamante's family.
Bustamante had been charged with first-degree murder and by pleading guilty to the lesser charges she avoided a trial and the possibility of spending her life in an adult prison with no chance of release.
The teenager's defense attorneys had argued for a sentence less than life in prison, saying Bustamante's use of the antidepressant Prozac had made her more prone to violence. They said she had suffered from depression for years and once attempted suicide by overdosing on painkillers.

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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Valentine Cards for Davontae

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Valentine Cards for Davontae | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

Here at Advocates for Abandoned Adolescents we would like to invite you to send a Valentine card to Davontae Sanford.
It has been a long hard road for Davontae and his family, let's show them our support on this beautiful day.

Please send Cards or letters to:
Ionia Correctional Facility,
1576 W. Bluewater Highway,
Ionia
MI 48846

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February 8th in African American History - Rebecca Davis Lee Crumpler | Today in African American History

February 8th in African American History - Rebecca Davis Lee Crumpler | Today in African American History | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it
In 1852, Crumpler moved to Charleston, Massachusetts where she worked as a nurse for eight years.
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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: A chance of parole for juveniles sentenced to life

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: A chance of parole for juveniles sentenced to life | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

Brian Warth was behind the wheel in a drive-by shooting in 1992. At 16 years old, he was tried as an adult and sentenced to 16 years to life for his role in a murder and attempted murder. The 15-year-old boy who actually pulled the trigger was tried as a juvenile and was paroled after about eight years.
After 16 years in prison, Warth was paroled in 2008. He made the most of his life on the inside, taking college and trade classes and spending 10 years as a prison pastor.
Today, as assistant pastor at Light & Life Christian Fellowship, a Methodist church in North Long Beach, his story has inspired kids and adults across the state. He’s also using his position to advocate for the California Fair Sentencing for Youth Act, Senate Bill 9, which would give prisoners who were sentenced as juveniles to life without parole a small chance of release.

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Advocates for Abandoned Adolescents: BACK STORY & DOUBLE LIFE OF VINCENT SMOTHERS: HIT MAN

Advocates for Abandoned Adolescents: BACK STORY & DOUBLE LIFE OF VINCENT SMOTHERS: HIT MAN | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

Vincent Smothers, 27 has confessed to the killing of a police officer’s wife. Rose Cobb, 47, wife of Sgt. David Cobb (1st photo), was shot multiple times while she sat inside the couples minivan outside of a CVS on Dec 27th of last year. David Cobb had been inside the store at the time. Smothers has now said that the murder of Cobb had been a hit, and David Cobb was the one who paid him to do it.

Smothers described himself as a professional hit man and claims he was paid $1,500 by Cobb to murder Rose Cobb. Smothers had an arrest warrant on charges of first-degree murder, felony murder, assault with intent to murder and firearm offenses. He and an accomplice allegedly shot three people, killing two at an apartment complex last June. Smothers has served time before on concealed weapons charges. He has now confessed to the murders of nine other people.

David Cobb would later commit suicide by hanging.

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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Detroit hit man says kid is innocent

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Detroit hit man says kid is innocent | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

Smothers said he never used a 14-year-old accomplice - blind in one eye and learning disabled - to carry out his paid hits, mostly victims tied to Detroit's drug trade. Ironically, there's no dispute that Smothers confessed to the so-called Runyon Street slayings when he was captured in 2008, but prosecutors have never charged him and never explained why.

"I understand what prison life is like; it's miserable. To be here and be innocent - I don't know what it's like," Smothers said of Sanford, who is now 19. "He's a kid, and I hate for him to do the kind of time they're giving him."

Told about the AP interview, Sanford's attorney said she soon would ask a judge to bring Smothers to court.

 

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Two charged with sex trafficking of runaway West Palm Beach girl

Two charged with sex trafficking of runaway West Palm Beach girl | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it
A pimp known as “Shagg Dog” and one of his prostitutes are facing federal charges after West Palm Beach Police found a reported-missing teenage girl in a hotel room where she was paid to have sex with men.
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Inmate Convicted for Seeking $890M in Tax Refunds

Inmate Convicted for Seeking $890M in Tax Refunds | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it
A jury has convicted a New York prison inmate of falsely filing tax returns seeking $890 million in refunds.
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Children Behind Bars

Children Behind Bars | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

Our youth are not failing the system; the system is failing our youth. Our legal system has been called the best in the world, but we take children, too young to understand the consequences of their actions and throw them into an adult world of arrests, court trials and prison sentences. This site is dedicated to children who have been tried as adults and are now serving sentences in adult prisons. Most were younger than 16 and most are serving life sentences with no chance for rehabilitation.

Please listen to the plea of the children. There are children languishing in adult prisons for the rest of their lives. We are hoping that some or just one of you will stand up for them and help us change the current juvenile laws. Other states are realizing this need for change and are doing something about it. Just what is cruel and unusual punishment? Shouldn't these children be rehabilitated and not just thrown away? We are willing to help in anyway to facilitate a change. Please help us save them.

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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: In teen’s death, lack of money is no excuse for lack of caring

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: In teen’s death, lack of money is no excuse for lack of caring | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

Paisley was seen by a medical staffer in the 2003 case, though the particular
nurse (who later pleaded guilty to culpable negligence) didn’t bother with an examination.
Her diagnosis of the dying kid: “Ain’t nothing wrong with his ass.” An equally compassionate
guard told Omar to “suck it up.”

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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Florida 'shoot first' law helps gangsters

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Florida 'shoot first' law helps gangsters | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

Lawyers representing two gang members who opened fire and killed a girl of nine in 2006 announced that they intended to cite the “Stand Your Ground” legislation as justification for shooting.

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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: TAMPA: Will Jogger that Shot Teenager Claim Self Defense?

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: TAMPA: Will Jogger that Shot Teenager Claim Self Defense? | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

According to a breaking story on TampaBay.com, a 28-year-old Tampa man was confronted by two (2) teenagers as he was jogging after midnight in Town 'n Country and (following a physical altercation) he shot one of them to death, said Larry McKinnon, a Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office (HCSO) spokesman.
The shooting happened after 1:00 a.m., near Pinehurst Drive and Hickory Circle. The teens were dressed in black and wearing hooded jackets, McKinnon said. No further information was given as to why two (2) teenagers would be out at 1:00 a.m., dressed in all black and wearing hoodies. However, its doubtful that they were also "out for a jog."
Thomas Baker, of 9015 Hickory Circle, fired multiple rounds with a .45-caliber semiautomatic handgun, McKinnon said. According to the online story, he was cooperative with the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office (HCSO) investigation.
It also appears that Mr. Baker will have a solid defense under Florida's relatively-new "Stand Your Ground" law.

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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: A Thai-born US immigrant was again cleared by an appeals court of the 1991 murders at a Buddhist temple in Arizona.

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: A Thai-born US immigrant was again cleared by an appeals court of the 1991 murders at a Buddhist temple in Arizona. | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

The lanky teenager dreamt of becoming a pilot and flying F-class fighters. But his dream was dashed when he was arrested and convicted of gunning down nine people – six monks, two helpers and a Buddhist nun – at Wat Promkunaram in Phoenix, Arizona. He received a 281-year prison sentence.

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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Davontae Sanford: Justice for Innocent Teen

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Davontae Sanford: Justice for Innocent Teen | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

The Petition

A Detroit hit man in prison for eight murders said he's willing to publicly take responsibility for four more to help clear a young man who claims he's innocent of the slayings and confessed at age 14 only to satisfy police.

Vincent Smothers' testimony would be the most crucial evidence yet to try to persuade a judge to throw out Davontae Sanford's guilty plea and free him from a nearly 40-year prison sentence. In an interview with The Associated Press, Smothers declared: "He's not guilty. He didn't do it."

Smothers said he never used a 14-year-old accomplice — blind in one eye and learning disabled — to carry out his paid hits, mostly victims tied to Detroit's drug trade. Ironically, there's no dispute that Smothers confessed to the so-called Runyon Street slayings when he was captured in 2008, but prosecutors have never charged him and never explained why.

"I understand what prison life is like; it's miserable. To be here and be innocent — I don't know what it's like," Smothers said of Sanford, who is now 19. "He's a kid, and I hate for him to do the kind of time they're giving him."

Given this ground breaking news we seek the immediate release of Davontae Sanford. Help us to end this gross miscarriage of justice, sign, share and be counted...No Justice No Peace!

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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Girl gang who kicked woman in the head while yelling 'kill the white slag' freed after judge hears 'they weren't used to drinking because they're Mu...

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Girl gang who kicked woman in the head while yelling 'kill the white slag' freed after judge hears 'they weren't used to drinking because they're Mu... | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

Girl gang who kicked woman in the head while yelling 'kill the white slag' freed after judge hears 'they weren't used to drinking because they're Muslims'

Yobs ripped lump of hair from Rhea Page's head during High Street attackThree sisters and cousin escape with six-month suspended sentencesMaximum term for assault occasioning actual bodily harm is five years' jailJudge: 'Those who knock someone to the floor and kick them in the head can expect to go inside, but I'm going to suspend the sentence'

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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Judge Daley retires after helping transform juvenile court

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Judge Daley retires after helping transform juvenile court | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

Daley said his approach to dealing with juveniles who appeared before him was imbued with the philosophy of St. John Bosco, whom, he said, “chose love rather than severity as his tool for teaching children to treasure God’s will.”Daley’s retirement reception was at the Elks Lodge in New Brunswick in late January. It was hosted by retired Judge Frederick De Vesa, a former colleague who also served for a time with Daley in the juvenile courts before moving to the adult criminal justice system.

De Vesa said he found working as a judge in the adult criminal system easier because its process is more clear-cut compared to the juvenile system, in which so many agonizing, gray-area decisions fall squarely on a judge’s shoulders.

“People of Middlesex County were very fortunate that Judge Daley chose to devote his entire judicial career to the betterment of the young people who came in contact with our juvenile courts,” De Vesa said. “His tenure was marked by just the right balance of legal knowledge, fairness, integrity and compassion.

“I’d like to see, and I surely hope, that those who follow in his footsteps share those values.”

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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Hit man tells how he killed Detroit cop's wife, Rose Cobb

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Hit man tells how he killed Detroit cop's wife, Rose Cobb | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

...Cobb was shot four times in the face at close range...

'Hit man tells how he killed Detroit cop's wife '

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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: BACK STORY & DOUBLE LIFE OF VINCENT SMOTHERS: HIT MAN

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: BACK STORY & DOUBLE LIFE OF VINCENT SMOTHERS: HIT MAN | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

Vincent Smothers wears death all over his body. The self-professed hit man is tattooed on his arms, back, legs and chest — permanent reminders of friends and loved ones who died before him. The names, tombstones and dates of their deaths are impressively etched on his 6-foot-1 lanky frame.
Smothers, 27, says he's no stranger to death. He told police that he stealthily freelanced seven slayings on Detroit's poverty-stricken east side from 2006 to the end of last year.
He said he mostly killed drug dealers who either owed a debt, stole the merchandise or had infringed on someone else's turf. But he also has confessed to killing two men who were targeted as federal informants and a Detroit police sergeant's wife.
In his confession, Smothers told police that he wasn't remorseful until he killed the sergeant's wife.
For the occasion, he donned suits, ties and sunglasses, and usually carried at least two guns — an AK47 and a .40-caliber pistol — for efficiency. He said he practiced shooting at a gun range between jobs.

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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: The Runyon Street murders: Davontae Sanford

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: The Runyon Street murders: Davontae Sanford | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

The original idea behind this report was to find a simple case illustrating the concept, set forth by local law enforcement, that between 65 and 70% percent of Deroit homicides were drug-related. Yet as I researched this quadruple murder case,

I discovered more twists than a Dan Brown novel.

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Prison 'in lockdown' after man climbs on roof

Prison 'in lockdown' after man climbs on roof | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it
Inmates at Acacia Prison are reportedly in lockdown after a prisoner managed to get on the roof of the medium security facility this morning.
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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Juvenile lifer Anthony Jones can have case heard by parole board, Kalamazoo judge orders

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Juvenile lifer Anthony Jones can have case heard by parole board, Kalamazoo judge orders | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

KALAMAZOO – Anthony Shamont Jones’ sentence now differs little from the one he received 33 years ago – life in prison.

But after a judge’s ruling Monday in Kalamazoo County Circuit Court, Jones has the hope of one day being a free man.
At a hearing to resentence Jones, 50, for his role in the 1979 killing of a Kalamazoo grocery store owner, Circuit Judge Gary C. Giguere Jr. ordered that Jones continue to serve life in prison but made him eligible to have his case heard by the state’s parole board.
While Giguere’s decision does not assure Jones will one day be released from prison, both his attorneys and his family said they were thankful that he has now at least been given the opportunity to state his case for release.
“We will urge the parole board to immediately consider him,” said Deborah LaBelle, one of Jones’ attorneys. “His co-defendant had that opportunity more than 20 years ago.”

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Advocates for Abandoned Adolescents: DEATHS OF CHILDREN IN JUVENILE JUSTICE CARE

Advocates for Abandoned Adolescents: DEATHS OF CHILDREN IN JUVENILE JUSTICE CARE | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

The children listed here died in Juvenile Justice Care. What are people in the U.S. doing about this kind of attrocity?

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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: New details in PB Juvenile Detention Center death of Eric Perez, work history of fired staff members

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: New details in PB Juvenile Detention Center death of Eric Perez, work history of fired staff members | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

Investigation reports state Perez showed signs of being confused and sick early that July morning. Staff members moved him to another room to sleep so they could “monitor” him. After vomiting, workers gave him Sprite to drink to calm his stomach.
No emergency responders were called to the facility. Perez died shortly after 8 that morning.

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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Shoot First Laws

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: Shoot First Laws | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

"Whenever any American's life is taken by another American unnecessarily - whether it is done in the name of the law or in the defiance of the law, by one man or a gang, in cold blood or in passion, in an attack of violence or in response to violence... the whole nation is degraded.
- Robert F. Kennedy, "On the Mindless Menace of Violence," April 1968

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Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: On the Legal Representation of Juvenile Defendants: Ode to My Investigator

Beyond Scared Straight -Juvenile Justice Reform: On the Legal Representation of Juvenile Defendants: Ode to My Investigator | Juvenile Justice | Scoop.it

Marshall and I have been working together now for less than a year, mostly on court-appointed juvenile cases. Both of us are relatively new to the area. Marshall gave up a career as a New York police officer after being shot twice in the chest. He drove himself to the hospital. The triage nurse, busy with some paperwork, told him to take a seat in the waiting area. “Just a moment, sweetheart,” she told him. “I’ll be right with you.” He still carries around two bullets in his chest.

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