Argued that Section (a)(4) of the Criminal History Records Information Act (18 Pa.C.S.A. § 9123(a)(4)) is unconstitutional on its face and as applied to the extent that it permits expungements to be denied solely on the basis of the Commonwealth’s refusal to consent, even in the absence of any evidence proffered by the Commonwealth and when all other statutory criteria are met.
Argued that J.B. should be released from detention pending his adjudicatory hearing in juvenile court because his unlawful detention violates Pennsylvania's Juvenile Act; challenged J.B.'s sentence as against the weight of the evidence.
Filed a federal civil rights lawsuit on behalf of two juveniles who were subjected to excessive and intolerable isolation while in the custody of the New Jersey Juvenile Justice Commission (JJC), claiming violations of substantive and procedural due process rights under federal and state law.
Juvenile Law Center and two private attorneys filed this brief on behalf of an eleven-year-old charged with the murder of his stepmother. The brief argued that the trial court’s interpretation of the transfer statute requiring the juvenile’s confession at the pre-adjudicatory decertification hearing in order to demonstrate his ability to be rehabilitated in the juvenile system was in violation of his right against self-incrimination and rights to due process and fundamental fairness under both the Pennsylvania and United States Constitutions.
Briefed the issue of constitutionality of a state certification statute that requires juveniles, in violation of their right to due process and against self-incrimination, to admit guilt in order to rebut the presumption of certification to adult court.
Challenged a provision of the PA Juvenile Act that barred Philadelphia adjudicated youth from returning to their regular public schools after they were discharged from residential delinquency placements.
Filed a civil rights suit against the detention center for violating the substantive due process rights of a 13-year-old boy with serious mental health problems by failing to protect him from harm while being detained at the center.
Motions were filed with the juvenile court seeking nunc pro tunc relief on behalf of youth who in York County had been adjudicated delinquent for sex offenses prior to December 2012 when the SORNA law went into effect. The motions for nunc pro tunc relief ask the court to reconsider their classification as juvenile sex offenders and remove their information from the sex offender registry.
These briefs involved a thirteen-year-old student who was questioned by four adults, including a uniformed police officer, on school grounds regarding a series of break-ins. Juvenile Law Center argued that the student should have been considered in custody for Miranda purposes.
One of the most important lessons from our 40 years of experience is that children involved with the justice and foster care systems need zealous legal advocates. Your support for our work is more important now than ever before.