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Adult Crimes Victim's Rights Cook County Balanced Justice Illinois
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Juvenile Justice Bureau
Juveniles Tried As Adults

The Juvenile Justice Bureau is dedicated to providing for the safety and best interests of children who are mistreated, to intervening with youth who have mistreated others, and to protecting and supporting the victims and communities affected by juvenile crime.

The Juvenile Justice Bureau comprises two divisions: The Child Protection Division, which reviews and prosecutes cases in which children are alleged to be abused, neglected or dependent; and the Delinquency Division, which reviews and prosecutes offenses committed by juveniles.

The Victim Witness Unit has staff assigned to the bureau to work with and support victims of juvenile crime. This unit also staffs the Victim Support Center at the Juvenile Court building on the near West Side.

The Child Protection Division screens, files and prosecutes civil cases in which minors under the age of 18 are alleged to be abused or neglected because of the action or inaction of the adults who are their parents or caretakers, or are dependent because they are without a parent or caretaker. In extreme cases we may seek to terminate parental rights when it is in the best interests of the children.

The Delinquency Division screens, files and prosecutes crimes committed by youths under the age of 17 who commit felony crimes, and as of January 1, 2010, all juveniles under the age of 18 who commit misdemeanors.  In extreme cases, we present evidence to demonstrate that a juvenile should be held accountable as an adult in the criminal courts. In addition to court-related responsibilities, the bureau staff collaborates with other agencies and dedicates time and talent to build community-based partnerships. Following the principles of Balanced and Restorative Justice, communities, victims and youthful offenders are essential stakeholders in the juvenile justice system.

Assistant State’s Attorneys participate in community partnership committees and in community events in order to inform community members, including youth, about juvenile justice matters. We strive to listen to community concerns and work with community members to address issues involving youth, families and victims. Increasing community participation in alternative programs enhances community awareness of delinquent behavior and gives the community an opportunity to address it.