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Under Georgia Bill, Minors Could Be Tried As Adults for Assaulting Cops

Thursday, March 2, 2017 13:54
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(Before It's News)

"" title=
"There's no alt-text where you're going kid ||| fourbyfourblazer / flickr "
width="300" style="float: right;" />Lawmakers in states across the
country are pushing for “Blue Lives Matter” legislation. In that
spirit, Georgia could soon make it much easier for juveniles who
get into altercations with police to be tried and punished as

The state has recently seen several House and Senate bills
introduced that would extend protections for law enforcement. The
target="_blank">Back the Badge Act
of 2017 rolls several such
proposals into a single package; one of those is href=
target="_blank">House Bill 116
, which would allow district
attorneys to try minors as adults if they’re accused of aggravated
assault with a firearm or aggravated battery against a public
safety officer, the ""
target="_blank">Atlanta Journal-Constitution
Georgia law currently says eight different charges can justify
moving a juvenile up. The house bill, which was introduced by state
Rep. Bert Reeves (R–Marietta), would increase that number.

The bill was inspired by the shooting of Georgia police officer
Scott Davis by a 15-year-old gang member, according to the
. The case started in juvenile court,
and the judge denied the prosecutor’s motion to try the teenage
suspect as an adult. “Nobody understands how she came to this
conclusion,” Reeves told the newspaper.

A spokesperson for the county district attorney’s office "nofollow" href=
the judge felt that the minor was
“amenable to juvenile treatment.” Reeves apparently disagrees. “If
you pull a gun on a cop or shoot at a cop, you’ve sailed beyond
juvenile treatment,” he said, per the AJC "nofollow" href=

H.B. 116 passed the state House on Monday 130–36. It will move
to the Senate despite objections from various criminal justice
advocacy groups, including the ""
target="_blank">Georgia Justice Project
. The nonprofit
organization argues that trying minors as adults is
counterproductive, as it increases their chances of re-offending,
according to a U.S. Department of Justice National Institute of
Corrections "" target=

“The weight of the research reviewing the public safety impact
of sending youth to the adult corrections system has found that
youth tried as adults are more likely to re-offend, even when
controlling for offense background and other characteristics, than
comparable youth retained in the juvenile system,” the report
reads. “Youth who are transferred from the juvenile court system to
the adult criminal system are approximately 34 percent more likely
than youth retained in the juvenile court system to be re-arrested
for a violent or other crimes.”

The report says upward of 250,000 juveniles end up in adult
criminal court every year. Every single state has some version of a
transfer law, according to the ""
target="_blank">National Conference of State Legislatures


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