Senator Bobby Powell’s reform legislation which would eliminate the direct file of juveniles into the adult justice system is moving closer to final Senate passage.
“This legislation gives our state the opportunity to finally redeem itself as the national leader in condemning our youth to the adult penal system,” said Senator Powell. “I applaud the bipartisan support that is moving this bill closer to becoming law.”
Senate Bill 876, entitled “Direct Filing of an Information”, eliminates mandatory direct file – a practice which automatically tries a juvenile in adult court without a hearing or testimony of any kind. The bill also allows any child being charged as an adult to request a hearing to appeal a prosecutor’s decision to direct file. Read the full bill here.
Yesterday, SB 876 passed its second of three Senate committee stops. The bill is now awaiting a hearing before the Appropriations Committee before heading to the Senate floor.
If successful, Senator Powell’s legislation would take effect July 1, 2019.