Arizona Laws Governing Jurisdiction Over Juveniles, Proposition 102 (1996)
|Laws Governing Jurisdiction Over Juveniles|
Text of measure
The language that appeared on the ballot:
Article VI, section 15, Constitution of Arizona, gives the Superior Court exclusive original jurisdiction in all proceedings and matters affecting juveniles. Under the Constitution, judges can decide whether to suspend the prosecution of a juvenile for a criminal offense. Proposition 102 would amend the Constitution by repealing Article VI, section 15 and by allowing the Legislature to limit the power of the courts to suspend the prosecution of a juvenile and by limiting the jurisdiction of the courts to those juvenile matters that are provided by the Legislature or the people. The Supreme Court and Superior Court would continue to have jurisdiction over juveniles, including dependent juveniles, pursuant to other existing laws unless those laws are amended by the Legislature or the people at some future time.
Currently, a juvenile may be prosecuted as an adult for a criminal offense only if the County Attorney requests that the juvenile be transferred to the Superior Court for criminal prosecution and the court grants the request for transfer. Under Proposition 102 juveniles who are 15 years of age or older and who are accused of murder, rape or armed robbery would be prosecuted as adults. Juveniles who are 15 years of age or older and who are accused of other violent crimes or who are chronic offenders would also be prosecuted as adults. Proposition 102 would allow the Legislature to determine the range of punishment for juvenile offenders, so that the Legislature could decide that some adult sentences don't apply to juveniles who are prosecuted as adults. Under Proposition 102, all juveniles who are convicted of a criminal offense or who are found responsible for unlawful conduct would be required to make prompt restitution to their victims.
Proposition 102 would allow county attorneys to establish community based alternatives for dealing with less serious juvenile offenders.
Proposition 102 would open to the public certain records and proceedings of juveniles who are accused of unlawful conduct that are now confidential. Juvenile records or proceedings could be closed only to protect the privacy of innocent victims of crime or if a court finds a clear public interest in confidentiality.