Children Under 12-Years-Old Won’t Face Prosecution For Committing Crimes Unless It’s A Homicide In One U.S. State

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Beginning on Jan.1, children under 12- years-old will not face apprehension or prosecution in the state of New York. The one exception will be in regards to matters of homicide.

Prior to now, anyone aged seven to 18 who committed a crime could face juvenile delinquency charges. Now, they will be referred to a social service department in their area.

Officials note that one concern with this new measure is that it adds another task to list of responsibilities that already exists for the agencies.

Another issue is that the programs offered by social services is voluntary, so a child doesn’t have to enroll if they don’t want to.

In 2019, almost 800 children under the age of 12 were apprehended in the state of New York.

Proponents of the measure state that it should have been in place long ago, and now children can get the assistance that they really need, like mental health care.

Some also say that it would prevent children from having criminal records for committing low-level crimes.



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