The assignment is a debate about the topic Should juvenile who commits a crime be tried as adults?

Home, - Should juvenile who commits a crime be tried as adults?


             In everyday life situations, people find themselves going against the state rules. The culprits of going against the law may be an adult or a young person. When these people commit crimes, the court system is responsible for giving direction on what penalty the police should give the individual (Goodenough et al. 16). However, the question of whether the juveniles should be tried as adults or not is an issue that opens for more questions than answers. Despite, the court system showing the suspects the right direction to follow in the society, it does not give clear direction on the ages and type of punishment each individual falling in that age group deserves. The prisons give the juveniles corporal punishments in jail that is not good for their lives. These punishments lead to serious problems in the teenager’s life. For instance, they cause problems such as brain damage, social interference, and many other health problems. In this assignment, it is going to focus on an example of a case that involved the juvenile and the severe punishment that the teenager faced in prisons. In addition to that, it is going to elaborate on the health effects of those punishments, which include brain damage among other things. In February 2009, Kenzie Houk fiancé’s son was suspected to have committed a crime. The incident was that the 26-year-old Kenzie Houk was found in her bed with a bullet through her bed. At this moment, she was eight months pregnant. The eleven-year-old child had to serve life in prison when he was convicted in Jordan. This incident shows that there is no limit to when a juvenile can be tried in the adult court in Pennsylvania. However, there are several effects of a child serving life prison like an adult (Guarino-Ghezzi, 44).

Part I

             Consequently, it may be effective if the children are only put behind the bars for two years. The reason why it should be as if that way is that there are several ways in which the brain development is highly affected by incarceration. The environment the teenagers are exposed to in jail is so hostile that the children develop some brain disorders. For instance, while behind the bars, the child develops stress, which may be because of loneliness (Hansenet al.89). When one was outside, he or she seems to be free and can do anything at any time. However, the prisons have restrictions that the child is not exposed to; this leads to anxiety and migraines in the life of the child. Apart from that, the disease called asthma also come because of staying in prison for a long time. On the other hand, the teenager’s future life is also disrupted in this manner of jailing. For instance, many children have ambitions of being great people in future. However, they can only achieve these dreams by going to school. The period in jail, limit their life of going to school. A good number of teenagers do not attend school and even if they join school after incarceration, many of them drop out of school (Zottoli et al. 430). Many prisons do not take education as a priority when handling the children. For that reason, many of them end up dropping out of school even after the jail term. When they drop out of school, they have nothing to do and in most cases, they end up going back to the criminal activities. In this case, the police force does not spare them thus making them end up again in jail.

Part II

    According to the records, many teenagers who come out of prison suffer from mental illness. The illnesses include anxiety, depression, and maniac disorders among others. As stated, the prisons treat the teenagers as criminals and do not focus on their health or rehabilitating them. The lack of interest in these children proves that the mental disorders that affect them are usually not addressed. Apparently, these illnesses affect the teenagers even if they go back to the society and even when they grow up. It is usually difficult to recover and many of them end up becoming nonproductive in the society. The effects of the disorders are usually evident to people around the teenagers. For instance, it is very difficult to interact with the youths because they are usually harsh and aggressive. The disorders usually affect the brain cells and the normal brain development does not go as usual. The abnormal development is what causes anxiety and depression to the teenagers. The hostile environment in jail makes them feel unwanted and difficult to interact with them in the society. In addition to that, whose children go back to school, they do not perform well, poor grades make them drop out of school and join the criminal activities again.

Part III

             The United States of America has been on the spot on giving the death penalty to children since 2005. The rule agreeing to give children death penalty was because of Supreme Court ruling in 2005 (Schiraldi, 78). Many families have been losing they are young once through different death penalties. For instance, from the ruling in 2005, there are different ways of performing death penalty. The various ways include hanging, shooting, lethal injection among other ways. The death rates of children have risen due to the death penalty law introduced in America. Many states in America are ensuring this law is put in place; however, there are some states, which are still reluctant to perform these laws. According to the statistics, many children have lost lives due to this law from the year 2005 up to 2014. In the part of death row, many people who form the death are men. The death row is the group of people in jail who are waiting to receive the death penalty. There are negative and positive consequences of giving children penalty of death. On the positive part, it is evident that the hard cow criminals deserve death. They have caused pain and losses to many people in the society and death is the best punishment that that person deserves. Secondly, the death penalty is the best way to reduce the level of crime in the society. When another group of criminals sees that one of their members has been given the death penalty, many people with the refrain from the behavior. Lastly, the method reduces the government expenditure on the criminals. Apparently, for the government to rehabilitate the set criminals, it needs more resources. When the death penalty is given to the criminals, the money that was to be used on them can be directed to other sources. However, on the other side of the coin, there are negative impacts of issuing the death penalty. For instance, innocent people may end up the victims of death penalty hence it may not prove to be the effective method of curbing criminal activities. Secondly, death penalty cause stress and depression to the family of the victim. The court may have issued the verdict because the suspect could not defend himself or herself. When the death penalty is issued to such individual, it leads to stress and depression to the family members. Lastly, the death penalty is not according to the human culture, it seems to inhumane to people.

Part IV

    The surrounding where the teenagers live has an impact on their criminal lives. The environments range from the family, neighborhood, school and the gang. If you begin with the family, this is where the juvenile grows and any activity that goes around in the family have the influence to the juvenile life. The most reliable condition that affects juvenile is the violent family and single parent families. The internal family violence where the members of the family assault each other, other members are exposed to commit serious criminal activities. When the child sees such activities, he or she is attempted to join the criminal activities. On the other hand, there can be violence family in the neighborhood where people are abused either sexually or physically. The child grows up with such immoral behaviors, which land him or her in jail. In several neighborhood settings, the grown-ups carry firearms to defend themselves, when the children come across such ammunition; he or she is tempted to test on how the guns work. This is where the life of being a juvenile begins. In addition to that, the school also have some contribution to the juvenile life. In school, children interact from various backgrounds. Other children copy what others do not know that it is a criminal activity, hence giving rise to the criminal life. On the side of the gang, the peers mostly influence the juvenile life.  The hard cow criminals challenge their age mates to join the terrorizing team. In most cases, the group of children who are influenced to join the gangs lacks the advice from the parents hence they move as the others go. However, the juvenile really affects the family. It causes depression among the members in case anything happens to the young once (Miller et al. 155). The neighbors have difficulty in accepting the member back to the society. After the prison life, most children drop out of school hence the members of the family remain illiterate.

Part V

    The brain is an essential part of the human body. It is made up of the cerebellum, cerebral cortex, brain stem and the limbic system. These parts develop at different stages. The development begins with the basic parts of the brain to complex parts of the brain. During the process of development, what comes first is the brain stem then cerebrum followed by limbic system and lastly cerebral cortex. Apparently, the way brain development goes means that the child is in position to establish the emotional experiences. When the brain is able to reveal the emotions in a child, it shows that if any similar experience; the brain is able to react to the same experience with the similar procedure. However, the main things that influence how brain works are the genes and the environment in which the child has lived. In this case, of the juvenile, the environment in the prison really affect the children. The environment makes the brain of the child to develop some specific behaviors. For instance, in the prison, the teenagers are not free; they feel suspicious and guilty most of the time. This instance leads to depression in the brain. The depression is accompanied by many worries in the brain of the child. The teenager is not aware of how the family members are faring on at home. Besides that, the future of the child is also disrupted (Nisar et al. 40). The main aim of the officers in the prison is to ensure that they do not repeat the things they have been doing according to how they treat the children. All the situations affect the child if he or she is out of jail.

Part VI

        Apart from prison, some alternative institutions that the government should put in place include the community service, therapy, day at home and night in the institution. The reason why the alternative is important in the juvenile is that the prisons do not focus mainly on rehabilitating the criminals but just treat them harshly. The community service is one of the best alternatives as the qualified members of the society are trained to educate the teenagers on the importance of maintaining the state laws (Monahan et al. 600). On the other hand, the alternative is important because it maintains the dream of the child. Many children who come out of jail lose the focus. Many of them have some disorders, which do not give them time to go on with their education. These disorders come because of the torture that the children undergo. These alternative institutions focus on behavior change rather than the punishment. The other thing is that there is a lot of congestion in the jail that the alternative institutions such as the community service can solve. Some of these teenagers fall into the trap because they do not know how to defend themselves. The psychologist can provide the therapy services that the juvenile requires.

Part VII

    After the incarceration process, the juvenile faces several challenges in the society. These challenges include rejection, difficulty to find a job, depression among other problems. However, there are ways in which one can start a new life after this process. The first way is to speak out your disappointments. The jail term sometimes is long and many individuals feel that they are nothing in the society. The best way to resolve this is by communicating with the family members. Tell people how things were and the way you think they were to be done. The openness helps in releasing out the stress. The second way to start life is by agreeing to the situation. You will encounter rejection after this period. You must be able to manage the rejection. Control any anger that may affect your way of life. Having too much anger may land you in more trouble, which may send you back to the prison. Consequently, one should not allow any negative behavior or influence in his or her life. The negative influences are the once which may have landed you in prison, avoid them at all cost. Be aware of the changes in your society. After a long period, several things might have changed in the society including the laws. You might end up shocked, but relax and cope up with the situation. The society may have been changed with new technologies among others. If there is any law ensure that, you ask to abide by the regulations.


    The debate on the juvenile is wide. However, it is very clear that there are several challenges in jail that the teenagers may not cop up with like an adult. The challenges not only ruin the health of the child but also his or her future. The authority should adopt other ways of handling the juvenile cases.

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