Riverside Police Department Press Release


For Immediate Release

Date September 21, 2004
Contact Detective Michele Jackson
Phone (951) 826-5939
Fax (951) 826-2596


Riverside Police Department Announces the Implementation of Riverside Youth Court to Celebrate National Youth Court Month

Riverside, Ca-  The Riverside Youth Court Partnership which is comprised of the Office of the Mayor, Riverside Police Department, (the administrating agency), Riverside County Juvenile Court, Riverside Youth Council, Riverside County Probation Department, Riverside County District Attorney’s Office, Riverside County Public Defender’s Office, Riverside Unified School District, Alvord Unified School District, Riverside County Bar Association, and the Greater Riverside Chamber of Commerce will begin hearing cases on September 22, 2004 in recognition of National Youth Court Month. The court proceedings will commence at 6:00 p.m. in the Historic Courthouse located at 4050 Main Street in Riverside.

Riverside Youth Court is an innovative approach to juvenile justice and acts as an early intervention for first time misdemeanor respondents. It is designed to give youth between the ages of 10 and 17, who have violated the law and admitted their guilt, a second chance. Those who are eligible for the program will have the case heard in a real courtroom with youth serving as prosecuting and defense attorneys, court clerks, bailiffs and jurors. An adult judge presides, but the youth jury determines the sentence.

The primary function of Riverside Youth Court is to determine a fair and restorative disposition for the juvenile respondent. Dispositions will include mandatory future jury duty, and one or more of the following: community service, letters of apologies, essays, educational workshops, counseling, restitution, drug testing, jail tour, curfew restrictions, behavior contract, and other creative dispositions.

When the disposition is completed, the respondent’s case will be closed. No criminal charges will be filed in the traditional juvenile justice system and the juvenile will have no record.

All Youth Court Volunteers will receive training in the juvenile justice system, the idea of restorative justice, and the deliberation process. Each volunteer will receive six hours of community service for attending the training and an additional three hours of community service each time he/she participates in a court session.

If you are interested in being a part of Riverside Youth Court call Senior Public Service Representative Tina Shook, program coordinator, at (951) 320-8010 or email her at RPD youthcourt@riversideca.gov