Mother wants to stop juveniles from being held in adult jails

2 years 7 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
LAKE OF THE OZARKS - 64 years later, a different lake and nearly triple the death toll, the duck boat... More >>
7 hours ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 9:12:00 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- Russian intelligence operatives attempted to hack into the online accounts of staffers on three congressional campaigns in the... More >>
8 hours ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 8:46:27 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — As Charlotte, North Carolina, celebrates being chosen Friday to host the 2020 Republican National Convention, an... More >>
9 hours ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 8:05:32 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- A cardiologist who treated former President George H.W. Bush was killed Friday morning in a bicycle-to-bicycle drive-by shooting... More >>
9 hours ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 7:34:02 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Police Department will move into a new neighborhood over the next few weeks. In July,... More >>
10 hours ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 6:41:00 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
CALLAWAY COUNTY - A Steedman man was sentenced to 12 years in prison after pleading guilty to charges of domestic... More >>
11 hours ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 5:22:00 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
ST. JOSEPH (AP) — A Missouri man has pleaded guilty in the fatal beating of his 77-year-old grandmother while he... More >>
13 hours ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 3:59:00 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- The FBI is in possession of a recording between President Donald Trump and his former personal attorney Michael... More >>
13 hours ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 3:38:16 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in Continuous News
JEFFERSON CITY – House Minority Leader Gail McCann Beatty will resign from the Missouri House of Representatives effective Sunday in... More >>
16 hours ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 12:57:00 PM CDT July 20, 2018 in Top Stories
COLE COUNTY — The Cole County Sheriff’s Department responded to possible weapons violation on Thursday night. When the officers... More >>
17 hours ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 11:47:00 AM CDT July 20, 2018 in Top Stories
(AP) - President Donald Trump has indicated that he's willing to hit every product imported from China with tariffs and... More >>
20 hours ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 8:52:00 AM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
BRANSON - A press conference was held Friday morning following Thursday's fatal boat capsizing at Table Rock Lake. As... More >>
21 hours ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 7:23:00 AM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
BRANSON (AP) — About 300 people gathered in a parking lot outside a tourism business to remember the 17 people... More >>
21 hours ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 7:16:00 AM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
BRANSON - The recent boat incident that killed 11 and injured seven in Branson isn't the first time Ride the... More >>
1 day ago Friday, July 20 2018 Jul 20, 2018 Friday, July 20, 2018 2:06:00 AM CDT July 20, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - Thursday evening around 9:00 pm, two cars collided head-on at the intersection of Worley St. and W. Boulevard.... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 11:14:00 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — A southern Missouri sheriff and a subordinate with whom he was having a romantic relationship have... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 10:46:00 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
COLUMBIA - The City of Columbia confirmed Friday the household hazardous waste collection is cancelled. The waste collection was... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 10:16:00 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
(CNN) -- More illnesses have been reported across the United States in two separate cyclospora outbreaks, federal health officials said... More >>
1 day ago Thursday, July 19 2018 Jul 19, 2018 Thursday, July 19, 2018 9:31:35 PM CDT July 19, 2018 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 68°
5am 68°
6am 67°
7am 68°
8am 72°