Intro:(catch their attention)
If you are old enough to commit the crime, then you are old enough to do the time. A crime will always be a crime and for every crime the same repercussion should be carried out for all. Same goes as if a person is old enough to takes someone’s life, then that person is also old enough to lose their own life. People should not be able to use the excuse of age when it comes to certain crimes such as rape and murder. For every action there should be an equal and fair reaction.
Minors or juveniles should be tried as adults when they commit violent crimes such as vandalism, arson, burglary, robbery, rape, aggravated assault, attempted murder, and murder. Juvenile crime has been an ongoing problem all throughout history. The way to handle those problematic minors who commit such serious crimes has also been a topic of debate for equally as long. As early as the 1950s, there were reportings of problems and chaos with the youthful society. It was around the 1980s when it was noticed and witnessed that there was a growing sense of desperatation for courts to take on more action having to do with minors commiting crimes. Different types of punishment have been implemented to crimes that minors have commited, however, time and effort has evidently show that it is extremely challenging to punish and provide help for there minor offenders, enough so that it will keep them out of trouble. For example, between the years of 1985 and 1994, the rate of these violent abominations commited by juvelies doubled, causing this issue to be a big problem. In 1994, the Congress of the United States of American approved the Violent Crime and Law Enforcement Act, which increases the ability of the prosecutors to try minors as adults. Consequently, around the United States, in almost every state, laws were approved making minors more likely to be charged as an adult would.
One of the main reasons as to why minors should be tried as an adult in court is because of the fact that minors need to accept responsibility for the things they do. The society cannot give minors a mere slap on the hand in order to let them know that it is indeed and okay thing to do to commit a crime. According to Paul Pfingst, District Attorney in San Diego, “We know that if this youngster goes to prison for the next 20 or 25 years, he will not be committing other murders during those 20 or 25 years.” He also believes that, “It is hard for all of us to put a youngster in prison, but sometimes the consequences are: to let that youngster out puts other people at risk and can create other victims, so it’s absolutely necessary for society to protect itself against people who kill, rape, or do other serious crimes, even if those people are 13, 14, 15, 16 or 17 years of age. Commiting a serious and violent crime is never the right thing to do.
Paul Pfingst, District Attorney, San Diego
Another reason to why minors should be tried as adults is that although the crime rate over the years has declined, crimes commited by minors are and have been increasing. There are laws that are created and these laws and rules should be acknowledged, enforced, and stuck to. Rules are rules and will always be rules. According to a CNN interview, Joe Arpaio, Sheriff of Maricopa County in Arizona, who works in one of the toughest jails in the United States claims that, “They pass laws, and juveniles should be tried as adults and that’s the way it is. You commit rape, murder, drive-by shootings, you go to jail, my jail, I have 170 in the jail waiting to go to trial, and if you’re convicted, you do the time. You do the time just like an adult.” The reality is that the victims of the loved ones that have experienced either serious injuries or even death do not care what age the offfender is. It is easy to argue something, but what happens when you actually experience this, where one of your friends or family members is on his or her death bed because of a crime that any person, in this case a minor, has commited? Laws are there for a reason, so that people abide by them, creating a safer environment for everyone.
Joe Arpaio, Sheriff, Maricopa County, Arizona
By trying minors as adults when they commit violent crimes, will create intimidation and prevent the rest of the youthful nation to commit more violent crimes. Michael Tror, Former Attorney with the Center for Individual Rights says, “If minors commit terrible adult crimes, they should have to face more serious consequences than the juvenile system allows. Courts usually make a determination that the accused are individually mature enough to face the consequences of their actions and they should be held to the same standard as everyone else.” By setting the example that you could get into serious trouble like going to prison, it makes these juveniles think twice before they even ever think about commiting such heinous crimes. This will therefore create lower juevenile delinquency statistics.
Michael Troy, Former Attorney with the Center for Individual Rights. He has published numerous articles in Washington Times and Washington Post. He graduated from University of Michigan Law School.
There are no excuses for violent crimes by any means, including age. Thus, minors of fourteen years of age or older should be tried as adults for violent crimes. The ongoing problem the society has with crimes having to do with youth violence continues. If laws and rules are implemented, which requires minors to be tried as adults for violent crimes are passed in all states, minors will keep in mind the concept of fear that they will actually end up in prison for life. This will then allow these minors to think twice before they commit violent crimes.