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Transfer of Juveniles to Adult Court: Effects of a Broad Policy in One Court

NCJ Number
232932
Date Published
Author(s)
Edward P. Mulvey and Carol A. Schubert
Publication Series
OJJDP Pathways to Desistance
Annotation
This bulletin presents findings from the Pathways to Desistance study regarding the effects of transfer from juvenile court to adult court on a sample of serious adolescent offenders in Maricopa County, AZ.
Abstract
This research compares the standing literature with findings from the Pathways study and discusses the possible implications of these findings for future changes in transfer statutes. Results suggest that adolescents in the adult system may be at risk for disruptions in their personal development, identity formation, relationships, learning, growth in skills and competencies, and positive movement into adult status; that most of the youth in the study who were sent to adult facilities returned to the community within a few years, varying widely in their levels of adjustment; that youth were more likely to successfully adjust when they were not influenced by antisocial peers; and that transferred youth are more likely to commit criminal acts than adolescents kept in the juvenile justice system. Findings from the Pathways study also indicate that transfer may have a differential effect (either reducing or increasing offending), depending on the juvenile’s presenting offense and prior offense history. Chart, endnotes, and references
Date Created: March 26, 2015