Juveniles In Adult Prisons

993 Words4 Pages
Imagine witnessing your parents’ brutal murder right in front of you. Your father is forced to his knees and shoot in the back of his head, execution-style. Your mother’s teeth lie on the floor from the bullet propelled through the side of her head. The fiend proceeds to move forward and shoot her brains out. For Carroll, this was a reality. Robert Acuna barbarically murdered James and Joyce Carroll. What do you think this savage deserves? In America, adolescents can be tried as adults at ages as young as 10. They can be sent to an adult prison with adult cellmates, trapped in an adult environment that they just are not ready for. The prison environment is very influential and may change adolescents for the worse. Exposure to adult criminals…show more content…
They could easily be assaulted and left with both physical and emotional scars. One in five victims of sexual violence in jails or prison are under the age of 18. Youth in adult prisons are thirty six times more likely to commit suicide than those in the juvenile system. Not to mention, they are allowed only very strict and monitored social exchanges, if any. This is detrimental to their social health. When released, with much of society despising former inmates, it will be hard to start over and get a new life. If sending teens to prison actually taught them a lesson, it would be all in vain. Moreover, if they are sent to prison, they will be exposed to adult criminals, who can plant ideas into their minds. When they are released, they might commit more violent crimes because of this. “Research suggests that adolescents squeezed through the adult system are more likely to come out as violent career criminals than similar kids handled on the juvenile side” (Lundstrom “Kids Are Kids- Until They Commit Crimes”). Twelve year old Lionel Tate was convicted to life in prison without parole for the murder of his six year old playmate, Tiffany Eunick. Eunick was brutally beat to death by Tate as he was imitating wrestlers on WWE. However, due to his mental incapabilities, he was released on probation for 30 years. Shortly after, Tate performed armed robbery on a…show more content…
Minors cannot smoke, drink, or vote, but as soon as they commit a crime, they are suddenly adults. Adolescents as young as 12 are being charged as adults. According to the legal system, citizens are not adults until the age of 18, so why should we not treat them as such? They are mentally incompetent compared to adults, and are unable to fully understand the judicial system to defend themselves. “When compared with young adults, children ages eleven to thirteen were more than three times as likely to be found ‘seriously impaired’ in understanding the judicial process and aiding their own defense. Similarly, it found those fourteen or fifteen years old were twice as likely to be "seriously impaired" in such awareness and reasoning” (Krikorian “Many Kids Called Unfit for Adult Trial”). It is unconstitutional to force adolescents to defend themselves when they are inept in doing so. Jordan Brown was only 11 when he was arrested for the murder of his stepmother, Kenzie Houk, and her unborn child. Houk was shot in the back of her head. Brown had in possession, a 20-gauge shotgun that he claimed he used for hunting. However, he claimed he never did it and was walking to the school bus with his sister. Even though there was insufficient evidence, Brown was left unable to defend himself, and charged with two counts of first degree murder in an adult
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