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Fewer Juveniles Being Prosecuted in Adult Court

Every year the Arizona Administrative Office of the Courts releases a report that gives an overview of the juveniles processed at various stages of the juvenile justice system across the state. This year’s report, Arizona’s Juvenile Court Counts: Statewide Statistical Information FY2011 was recently released and we are happy to say we’ve found some good news in it.

The number of juveniles who were sent to juvenile court last year was significantly less than it was just 5 years ago. In 2007, 48,677 juveniles were referred to juvenile court to face possible disciplinary action. Last year, that number fell to 36,639, a decrease of 25%!

Similarly, the number of juveniles prosecuted as adults decreased in between 2007 and 2011. In 2007, 588 juveniles were prosecuted in adult court. By 2011 that number had decreased by 38% to 364!

Congratulations to Arizona youth and to the work of families, communities, law enforcement and all the agencies working with youth for making this progress possible. We all have much more to do to improve outcomes for youth and to reform the juvenile justice system, but the numbers reflected throughout this report should give us encouragement to move forward.

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