From juvenile court to the adult criminal justice system: An examination of judicial waiver

Sheri Lu Jenkins Cruz

Abstract

This project was concerned with how extra legal factors impact juvenile court judge.s decisions to waive juveniles to the adult criminal court. This study had both a general and a specific purpose. Generally, it sought to identify and examine the perceptions of juvenile court judges regarding judicial waiver based on previous positions held and on the state in which the juvenile judge resides. Specifically, this study sought to examine the relationship between individual characteristics of juvenile court judges and their perceptions regarding judicial waiver. Based on the research questions, ten hypotheses were developed and tested. The population for this study consisted of all juvenile court judges and referees in Alabama, Colorado, Illinois, Mississippi, Missouri, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Utah. Descriptive statistics were used to calculate the means, frequencies, and standard deviations for the demographic information collected from the participants in this study. The data was then analyzed using a Multivariate Analysis of Variance (MANOVA) and Multiple Linear Regression (MLR). The researcher acknowledges that there are differences in the definitions for the words transfer and waiver; however, to reduce confusion, for the purposes of this study, the word waiver will be used for both.