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Los Alamos Teen Court provides first time juvenile offenders with an opportunity to be held accountable for their actions, to make amends for the acts they committed, and to learn from their mistakes.
Teen Court is a nationally recognized program of early intervention and restorative justice for juveniles (ages 12-18). It is a diversionary court that keeps first time offenders out of the traditional court system. They plead guilty, appear before a jury of their peers, and are sentenced. Juveniles brought before Teen Court must accept responsibility for their actions. They face consequences that help them learn from their mistakes and make amends for the acts they committed. The sanctions are determined by the Teen Court jury, and usually include community service and jury duty at a future Teen Court hearing. Also possible are sanctions like essays, letters of apology, educational programs, gender specific programs, and substance abuse prevention workshops.
- Molly Niday
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