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N.C. Commission proposes 16-year-olds be tried as juveniles [The Daily Tar Heel]

Friday, August 26, 2016  
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Daily Tar Heel


The Family First Act is a hot topic within the foster care community and has caught the attention of advocates nationwide.


Ninety-six percent of the crimes 16- and 17-year-olds commit in North Carolina are non-violent. Eighty percent of those crimes are misdemeanors. Yet 100 percent of these teenagers are tried as adults.


In most states, the age of criminal adulthood is 18. Five states mandate 17-year-olds be tried as adults, but North Carolina and New York require kids as young as 16 to be automatically tried in adult court.


But that might soon change.


The North Carolina Commission on the Administration of Law and Justice, convened by the state supreme court, released a preliminary report in August recommending the state raise age of criminal responsibility to 18, which the General Assembly may consider in January 2017.


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