Mother wants to stop juveniles from being held in adult jails

1 year 10 months 2 weeks ago Wednesday, December 02 2015 Dec 2, 2015 Wednesday, December 02, 2015 7:20:00 PM CST December 02, 2015 in News
By: Nick Komisar, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

JEFFERSON CITY - A Missouri lawmaker has pre-filed Senate Bill 618 to be reviewed in the 2016 legislative session, which is set to begin Jan. 6. The bill aims to outlaw holding youth suspects under the age of 17 in adult facilities until they are sentenced to adult prison. 

In Missouri, if a juvenile is charged and certified as an adult, then he or she is held in adult facilities. 

Tracy McClard started the organization Family and Friends Organizing for Reform of Juvenile Justice (FORJ-MO). She started the organization after her 17-year-old committed suicide while being held in an adult facility. He had been in an adult facility since the age of 16, after pleading guilty to shooting someone. 

McClard said her son faced both physical and emotional abuse while being held in the facility and said the fact he was a minor made him an easy target. 

"He was brutalized, he was beaten, he was terrified, he was placed in solitary confinement until finally he died," McClard said. 

"They become targets, they are usually targeted sexually or physically within the first 48 hours," McClard said about juveniles being held in county jails. "And all of that happened to Jonathon."

A similar bill was filed last year but did not pass because of funding concerns. Juvenile facilities provide services that many adult facilities do not.

McClard said many facilities continue the kids' educations, as well as offer extensive psychological services. This means extra funding is needed for these programs if more juveniles will be held in such facilities. 

Joy Knopf shares a similar sentiment to McClard. Her son was charged with 2nd degree murder at the age of 15 and a judge certified him as an adult. 

"He was taken immediately to jail, where he wasn't segregated from adults," Knopf said. "He was in fact harmed while he was in there, at the point that his attorney contacted the jail to address that and ask for help. They took my son and put him in solitary confinement for two weeks." 

Knopf's son is currently in prison serving a 30-year sentence.

FORJ-MO is also working to get a bill passed that would raise the age someone can be automatically charged as an adult to 18. It is currently 17.

Both Knopf and McClard said their motivation is not their own children, it is to make sure other kids do not have to go through the same experiences. 

More News

Grid
List
Moberly - An arraignment is scheduled Monday for a Moberly man facing several felony charges ranging from incest, rape or... More >>
1 hour ago Sunday, October 22 2017 Oct 22, 2017 Sunday, October 22, 2017 9:00:00 AM CDT October 22, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA- Missouri and Kansas will play a friendly version of their 'Border War' rivalry for the first time since 2012.... More >>
3 hours ago Sunday, October 22 2017 Oct 22, 2017 Sunday, October 22, 2017 6:56:00 AM CDT October 22, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - An armed robbery occurred Saturday night at an O’Reilly Auto Parts store on Cooper Drive. CPD officers... More >>
12 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 10:10:35 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - One man was taken to a local hospital for a gunshot wound received Saturday night. CPD officers... More >>
12 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 9:56:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
NEW FRANKLIN - The Missouri River Relief organized about 250 volunteers Saturday to remove trash from the Missouri River as... More >>
15 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 7:38:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Officers responded to reports of shots fired at about 6:00 p.m. Saturday at the McDonald's Restaurant on Stadium... More >>
15 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 7:36:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
BOONE COUNTY – Four people were injured in a three-vehicle collision at Obermiller Road Saturday afternoon according to a sergeant... More >>
16 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 6:24:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
FULTON - Dozens of trucks raced though the mud to raise money for the Central Missouri Honor Flight Saturday at... More >>
16 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 5:48:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — The state no longer will make children in foster care pay a $15 fee to get... More >>
17 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 4:56:46 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
HOLTS SUMMIT- New bike lines were painted in Holts Summit Thursday to make cycling safer and more accessible. The... More >>
18 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 3:49:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY- Local entrepreneurs walked away with some cash Saturday after an annual pitch off competition. The sixth annual... More >>
19 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 3:42:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — The St. Louis public school district is suing 32 teachers for breaking their contracts by leaving... More >>
19 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 3:35:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - The University of Missouri Museum of Art and Archaeology hosted an explorative event on Saturday for International Archaeology... More >>
19 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 3:23:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A St. Louis Community College professor was grabbed from behind by an officer, pulled to the... More >>
21 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 1:33:18 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
MOBERLY - The Missouri Association of Student Financial Aid Personnel (MASFAP) is celebrating 50 years of providing greater access to... More >>
21 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 1:09:00 PM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Kansas City's efforts to obtain $40 million in federal funding to replace an important bridge are... More >>
23 hours ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 10:43:44 AM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - The Center Project, mid-Missouri's LGBTQ community center, will provide free health care and behavioral health services Saturday to... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 7:20:00 AM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Local charity Pink Pursuit raises money to provide mammograms on a van that travels across Missouri. "I... More >>
1 day ago Saturday, October 21 2017 Oct 21, 2017 Saturday, October 21, 2017 3:25:00 AM CDT October 21, 2017 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 53°
11am 55°
12pm 55°
1pm 56°
2pm 58°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

10:30a
The Champion Within
11:00a
Figure Skating
1:00p
F1 Countdown
10:30a
In Search of the Lord's Way
11:00a
Paid Program
11:30a
Paid Program

Tonight's Schedule

6:00p
Football Night in America
7:20p
Sunday Night Football
7:00p
Twisted
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Family Guy