I hope it goes through this time. This idea that young people who commit crimes are irretrievably evil is a self-fulfilling prophecy:
Connecticut Governor Dannel P. Malloy is once again attempting to raise the age that a person can be charged as a juvenile to 18-20. His attempt came not long before the beginning of the 2017 General Assembly session when he spoke of the issue in front of the Juvenile Justice Policy & Oversight Committee.
Governor Malloy said that now is the time to move forward and not backwards when it comes to juvenile justice reforms. His first attempt at getting his Second Chance 2.0 legislation failed in 2016. Lawmakers were worried that they would lose votes during the 2016 November election because the legislation lacked regarding those who were convicted.
Governor Malloy, in arguing for the juvenile justice reform, said that Connecticut is seeing its lowest crime rate in 50 years and lowest prison population in 22 years. He also noted that studies have found that pushing juveniles towards rehabilitating themselves and not into prison has worked.
According to statistics from the FBI, the state of Connecticut was just one of nine in the country to see a drop in violent crimes between 2014 and 2015. The state also experienced the second-largest drop in violent crime in the United States for that period.
Malloy continued to quote studies when speaking with the Juvenile Justice Policy & Oversight Committee. He stated that some studies he read show that the brain does not fully develop until people reach the age of 25.
The governor said that the legislation he is proposing would help to end the pipeline referred to as school to prison. This type of pipeline forces people to suffer for a crime they committed at a young age for the rest of their lives.
Malloy did make it a point to say that he is not going soft on crime, noting that violent offenders are doing more time than in previous years. During his time in office Malloy has shuttered four prisons, with the fourth closing this year.
“With the news of Governor Malloy attempting to increase the juvenile age to between 18 and 20, our firm can help you fight criminal charges as a juvenile in Connecticut,” Sean Barrett, of Billings & Barrett, said.