2nd International Conference and Expo on Clinical Psychology
Board Certified in Forensic Psychology Private Practice, USA
Title: The continuing challenges of evaluating Juvenile competency to stand trial
Biography: Adrienne C Davis
As an increasing number of juveniles are being tried as adults, it has become necessary to extend to them the same due process protections that are afforded adult offenders. In addition, since the types of offenses in which juveniles are involved have become more serious, there is more at stake when judicial decisions are made, particularly with respect to sentencing. These issues become especially important in determining a juvenile’s competency to stand trial. Historically, efforts have been made to adapt the same competency criteria and/or guidelines, and assessment tools used in evaluating adult offenders to juvenile cases. However, research indicates that unlike adults, there are factors related to a juvenile’s age, developmental stage and maturity that present challenges in determining their competency. This presentation will discuss the evolution of juvenile competency to stand trial, the differences between evaluating adults and juveniles, how these differences are addressed, and the continuing issues that make doing these evaluations a unique challenge for practitioners involved in the juvenile forensic arena.