Juvenile Punishment

The question: "Should young people who commit violent crimes be tried as adults?" has been debated for years.For instance, on an October night of 1998, Shaun Miller, 15 years old, and three of his other friends robbed a store in a small town of Nevada.The oldest one, 19 years old, planned the crime and held the gun to the cashier's head. Shaun, unarmed, took $726 from the cash register; this was caught on the videotape (Rimer & Smith, 2002).I want to go back to the question: "Should young people who commit violent crimes be tried as adults?"How about Shaun Miller who was unarmed and did nothing but take $726 from the cash register–should he be charged as an adult? The answer to both of these questions is YES! I believe that no matter how old a juvenile is, if they are able to commit a crime, they are responsible for their actions.Like Shaun Miller, even though he was unarmed, he was there and took part in the action. In the adult system, the issue of a "leaders" or "followers" is irrelevant because every individual is looked at the same. This is different than the juvenile system where followers are sentenced less severely than leaders (Rimer & Smith, 2002).I feel that juveniles who commit crimes that are severe such as sexual assault, robbery, drug selling, and murder should be charged as adults no matter what age they are when the crime was committed.
What age is youth consider as adults? Age plays an important factor in determining if youth should be charged as adults or juveniles for crimes that they commit. The debate of when do children become adults has varied from one period to another. For example, in the Middle Ages, children who were seven were considered as adult because they could farm and work in the fields (Bartollas & Miller, 1994).During the Renaissance, children from poor families became adults at seven, but for aristocratic children they became adults af…

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