Unbalanced Youth Justice

The Burns Institute is in pursuit of an equitable and excellent youth justice system. A system used sparingly and appropriately.  We know that our current youth justice system is not equitable, excellent, or used sparingly and appropriately. More than 47,000 youth were incarcerated on any given night in 2015, most (73 percent) for non-violent offenses. The majority (69 percent) of those incarcerated were youth of color.  Learn more »

Use the tools below to explore this issue »

One-day count

Data in this section show how many youth are detained, committed, or otherwise sleeping somewhere other than their homes per orders of the court on "any given day" in select years. Data is available for the nation and on a state-by-state basis, and are based upon one-day counts of youth in residential placement facilities conducted in 1997, 1999, 2001, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2010, 2011, 2013, and 2015. Learn more »

Show table and download this data

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Year White Black Latino Native American Asian Other All youth of color All youth

Annual decision points

This section includes data at nine key juvenile justice annual decision points. Data are available at the county and state-level, but only for counties that report. This section allows you to view the data from many different angles and all of the data is broken down by race and ethnicity. Learn more »

Year

Data not available for every year. (Why?)

Available years are those for which states have submitted data to OJJDP. States do not submit data on an annual basis.

Case flow diagram

Click on a decision-making point to see the data for that point. Click additional decision-making points to the graph to compare.

  1. Youth population

  • 1Comparison of arrest to population is rate per 1,000 youth. All other annual decision points are rate per 100 youth at the prior decision-making point.
  • 2Due to differences in how states define arrests and referrals to court, some states may have more referrals to court than arrests.
Show table and download this data

Click column headers to sort Download

Decision White Black Latino American Indian or Alaskan Native Hawaiian or Pacific Islander Asian Other All youth of color All youth

22 of 64 counties (Why?)

Originally, states were only required to examine three counties: those with the greatest proportions of minority youth within their juvenile population, as well as those that contained the greatest numbers of minority youth. Only recently has OJJDP required that states track DMC data for all potential DMC reduction sites on a regular basis (at least every 3 years). If a county is not a DMC reduction site, data may not be available.

Detention statute

Juvenile courts may hold delinquents in a secure detention facility if the court believes it is in the best interest of the community or the child. After arrest a youth is often brought to the local juvenile detention facility by law enforcement. Juvenile probation officers or detention workers review the case and decide if the juvenile should be held pending a hearing by a judge.

Jurisdiction ages

10-17
Extended Age of Delinquency Jurisdiction: The juvenile court retains jurisdiction until the completion of the terms of the dispositional order, regardless of the type of commitment

Age of Detention

10–21

Standard for detention

(3)(a)(III) With respect to this section, the court may further detain the juvenile if the court is satisfied from the information provided at the hearing that the juvenile is a danger to himself or herself or to the community. Any information having probative value shall be received regardless of its admissibility under the rules of evidence. In determining whether a juvenile requires detention, the court shall consider any record of any prior adjudications of the juvenile. There shall be a rebuttable presumption that a juvenile is a danger to himself or herself or to the community if:

(A) The juvenile is alleged to have committed a felony enumerated as a crime of violence pursuant to section 18-1.3-406, C.R.S.; or

(B) The juvenile is alleged to have used, or possessed and threatened to use, a firearm during the commission of any felony offense against a person, as such offenses are described in article 3 of title 18, C.R.S.; or

(C) The juvenile is alleged to have committed possessing a dangerous or illegal weapon, as described in section 18-12-102, C.R.S.; possession of a defaced firearm, as described in section 18-12-103, C.R.S.; unlawfully carrying a concealed weapon, as described in section 18-12-105, C.R.S.; unlawfully carrying a concealed weapon on school, college, or university grounds, as described in section 18-12-105.5, C.R.S.; prohibited use of weapons, as described in section 18-12-106, C.R.S.; illegal discharge of a firearm, as described in section 18-12-107.5, C.R.S.; or illegal possession of a handgun by a juvenile, as described in section 18-12-108.5, C.R.S.

Detention hearing timeline

Within forty-eight hours, excluding Saturdays, Sundays, and legal holidays; may be extended for a reasonable time by order of the court upon good cause shown.

Contact

Please email Anna Wong with any updates to contact information for your DMC coordinator, JJS coordinator, or DMC subcommittee chair.

DMC coordinator

Anna Lopez
Division of Criminal Justice
700 Kipling Street, Ste. 1000
Denver, CO 80215
Phone: 303-239-5705
Fax: 303-239-4491
Email: anna.lopez@cdps.state.co.us

Website (out of date)

JJS coordinator

Meg Williams
Program Manager
Division of Criminal Justice
Department of Public Safety
700 Kipling Street, Suite 1000
Denver, CO 80215
Phone: 303-239-5717
Fax: 303-239-4491
meg.williams@cdps.state.co.us

DMC subcommittee chair

Kayla Durran
Phone: 720-345-4945
kdurran83@gmail.com

Reform efforts

States that wish to post their most recent three-year plans or share other relevant publications about their reform work should contact Anna Wong. We would be happy to link to relevant documents and information.

DMC reform efforts

  • Assessments conducted in communities to define causes of overrepresentation
  • Looking into barriers to collecting race/ethnicity data on the state level

State plans

Three-year plan 2012–2014

March 2013 update

State Advisory Group (SAG)

The Council is responsible for:

  1. Setting funding priorities
  2. Approving and denying grant applications under each program (Formula Grants, Title V, and Challenge)
  3. Developing recommendations to the governor on the state of juvenile justice and suggestions on how to improve the system
  4. Monitoring justice trends
  5. Approving an annual juvenile justice plan
  6. Funding and policy decisions

SAG chair

Bonnie E. Saltzman, Esq. 05/08
JJDP Council Chair
425 S Cherry St., Ste. 620
Denver, CO 80246
Phone: 303-333-3554
Fax: 303-333-3561
SaltzmanLaw@aol.com
Website

Organizational structure

The Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (JJDP) Council is comprised of up to 33 citizens, system professionals, and youth members, who are appointed by the governor and charged with the responsibility of administering the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act program

Committees

Colorado Coalition for Minority Youth Equality (CMYE)

Gender-Specific

Gender-Specific Services has been a Colorado priority for the past 7 years and several accomplishments have been realized including development of Guidelines for Effective Female-Specific Programming (Guidelines At a Glance), that are intended to encourage professionals to look critically at how services are provided to girls in both gender-specific and mixed gender programs. Despite this, we continue to see some troubling statistics.

Juvenile Justice and Mental Health Work Group

To coordinate Colorado efforts initiated to address the needs of youth who have mental health and/or co-occurring disorders and who are involved in the juvenile justice system, the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (JJDP) Council merged its Mental Health Committee with the Juvenile Justice Subcommittee of the Task Force to address Mental Illness in the Criminal Justice System.

Membership

  1. Dianne A. Van Voorhees, Esq., Council Chair, Executive Director, Metro Volunteer Lawyers
  2. Joe Higgins, Mesa County Partners
  3. Katie Wells, Council Vice-Chair, Alcohol & Drug Abuse DivisionAdolescent Programs
  4. Larry Hudson, Attorney, Greenberg, Traurig, LLP
  5. Donia Rae Amick, Sergeant, Lakewood Police Department
  6. Michelle Molinar-Dominquez, Youth Community Member
  7. Katy Avila, Youth Community Member
  8. Sheriff Gerry Oyen, Bent County Sheriff's Office
  9. Bill Bane, Mental Health Services, Colorado Dept. of Human Services
  10. Stan Paprocki, Alcohol & Drug Abuse Division, Prevention Services
  11. Michelle Brinegar, Chief Deputy District Attorney, 8th Judicial District
  12. Bob Pence, Community Member, Former Law Enforcement
  13. Steve Brittain, Tribal Dept. of Social Services, Southern Ute Tribe
  14. Bonnie E. Saltzman, Esq., Attorney
  15. Alison (Ali) Bujanovich, Youth Community Member
  16. Judge David L. Shakes, District Judge, State of Colorado
  17. Susan Colling, Probation Services, State Court Administrator's Office
  18. Lindi Sinton, Volunteers of America, Colorado Branch
  19. Bob Coulson, Adolescent Programs Administrator, Child Welfare
  20. Deborah Leah Staten, Principal of the Johnson Program & Student Outreach Coordinator
  21. Jim Covino, Esq., Attorney
  22. Pam Wakefield, Guardian Ad Litem
  23. Kayla Duran, Youth Community Member
  24. Debbie Wilde, Executive Director, YouthZone
  25. Alisha Encinias, Youth Community Member
  26. Jeremy Wilson, Youth Community Member
  27. Regis Groff, Community Member, Former State Senator

About the data

Our website is populated by data provided to us by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (OJJDP). Continue reading for details about the One-day count and Annual decision points data.

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Complete downloads of the data are available in several formats:

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Each table of data is also available for download. Click Show table below any table to download just the data shown.