How are youth offenders handled in the Juvenile Justice System?
Rogers, K. M., Zima, B., Powell, E., & Pumariega, A. J. (2002).  Who is referred to mental health services in the juvenile justice system? Journal of Child and Family Studies, 10 (4) 485-494.
  1. Who is referred to mental-health services in the juvenile justice system?
    1. 60% of detained youths have emotional or behavioral disorders
    2. Age at first arrest correlates with higher mental-health referrals
    3. Mental-health referrals made by individuals with different levels of training: staff, probation officers, judges, or nurses.
    4. In a study of over 3000 detained youth in 1995, only 6% were referred for mental-health services in six months
    5. Higher referral rates due to demographic factors were as follows: Females and African-Americans received more referrals
    6. Overrepresentation of female minors could result from defiance and acting out behaviors being more acceptable in male detainees
    7. It was found that medically trained staff members were more likely to refer disruptive youths for mental-health services
    8. Relevance to conduct disorder: nonmedically trained staff members are more likely to punish disruptive or aggressive behavior in boys than to refer for mental-health services which may be require
  2. Antisocial personality disorder
    1. 40% of boys and 35% of girls who met the criteria for CD in childhood subsequently met the criteria for APD in adulthood (Lahey, Loeber, Hart, Frick, Applegate, Zhang, et al., 1995)
    2. Serious risk of juvenile detainees becoming career criminals if mental-health issues are not treated.
McCroskey, J. (2006). Youth in the Los Angeles county juvenile justice system: current conditions and possible directions for change. L.A. County Children's Planning Council, 4, 1-46. 
  1. Juvenile justice system - Los Angeles County
    1. (2002) California ranked 46th among the 50 states in the rate of youth detention - 392/100,000
    2. Los Angeles County: 53,000 juvenile arrests per year with 20,000 youths spending time in juvenile hall or detention camp
    3. Juvenile justice more complicated than adult system: additional prevention, divergent, alternative sentencing, and reintegration to community and family
    4. Five times as many males arrested as females
    5. "Dual Jurisdiction"

                                                               i.      Under California law, minors may not be simultaneously under the jurisdiction of DCFS and juvenile justice

                                                             ii.      Interaction between systems is complex: a special adjudication hearing process must be convened

                                                            iii.      Number of cases unknown, appears to be on the increase

                                                           iv.      268 youths were assessed to show mental-health problems-36% had conduct disorders

                                                             v.      Since 2001-DMH screened all new juvenile hall entrants and found 60% had used DMH services previously

                                                           vi.      Of these, 30% were determined to require a full DMH assessment

    1. 30% is significantly lower than the national average of 60%, Is California falling behind in serving the mental-health needs of children in the juvenile justice system?
    2. Possible direction for change: All you three screened for mental-health services when they move from camp to juvenile hall to placement
    3. Problem: Federal guidelines limit the resources available to fund treatment because Medi-Cal eligibility is removed when juveniles are incarcerated
Arredondo, D. (2001). Juvenile mental health court rationale and protocols. Juvenile and Family Court Journal, 3, 1-19.
  1. Juvenile Mental Health Court - Santa Clara County
    1. Statistics

                                                               i.      The rate of mental illness among juvenile offenders is 50% to 75% in the juvenile justice system nationwide (The coalition for juvenile Justice in Washington, 2001)

                                                             ii.      15% to 20% suffer from severe biologically based mental illness like bipolar or schizophrenia.

                                                            iii.      37% had experienced severe traumatic experiences - severe injury or death

    1. The Solution

                                                               i.      (2001) The nation's first juvenile mental health in Santa Clara County

                                                             ii.      Serves seriously mental ill children who have become involved in the criminal justice system

                                                            iii.      Poor interaction between mental health and juvenile justice

    1. Rationale:

                                                               i.      A desire to prevent mentally ill kids from getting mired in a system that is ill-equipped to rehabilitate them.

    1. The Process

                                                               i.      Mental health screening of all minors brought into custody

                                                             ii.      Should minor meet diagnostic and severity criteria - minor receives comprehensive psychological assessment

                                                            iii.      When substance abuse is severe, minors referred to concurrent alcohol and drug treatment program

    1. Limitations

                                                               i.      Only targets conditions with a genetic component: Major depression, bipolar disorder, severe anxiety disorder, severe ADHD, schizophrenia, pervasive developmental disorders, and brain injuries.

                                                             ii.      Unless complicated by other conditions, conduct disorder and personality disorders would not qualify juveniles for juvenile mental health court