Sen. Murphy Plans Bill Based on Connecticut Juvenile Justice Reforms


U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) told advocates, clergy, and elected officials this week he will introduce legislation to reform the nation’s juvenile justice laws based on the changes adopted in Connecticut, reports the New Haven (CT) Register. “In Connecticut we have decriminalized certain juvenile offenses like truancy and then we have moved kids out of prisons into community settings,” Murphy said, criticizing use of police in schools, where fights once settled in the principal’s office now end up in court. Among Connecticut’s reforms has been raising the age when teens can be charged as adults from 16 to 18. Half as many juveniles are in detention even though the pool of potential teens in the system has increased, said Michael Lawlor, Gov. Dannel Malloy’s liaison to the criminal justice system. He said Connecticut has closed one of its three juvenile detention facilities and the other two are half full.

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