Section 12-15-208

Facilities to be used for detention or shelter care of children generally; when child may be detained in jail or other facility for detention of adults; notification of juvenile court, when child received at facility for detention of adult offenders or persons charged with crimes; development of statewide system; Department of Youth Services to subsidize detention in regional facilities, may contract for detention; transfer of child to detention facility, when case transferred from juvenile court for criminal prosecution.

(a) Persons who shall not be detained or confined in secure custody include all of the following:

(1) STATUS OFFENDERS. Effective October 1, 2009, status offenders, as defined in this article, shall not be detained or confined in secure custody, except that a status offender who is charged with or who commits a violation of a valid court order may be detained in secure custody in a juvenile detention facility for up to 72 hours in any six-month period, provided that all conditions set forth in subdivision (3) of subsection (b) are satisfied. Short-term secure custody of accused status offenders may be necessary, such as detention in a juvenile detention facility for a brief period, not exceeding 24 hours, prior to formal juvenile court action, for investigative purposes, for identification purposes, or for the purpose of allowing return of a status offender to the parent, legal guardian, or legal custodian. Detention for a brief period of time pursuant to juvenile court authority may also be necessary in order to arrange for appropriate shelter care placement. If a petition regarding an alleged status offender is filed in juvenile court and if it is determined that the alleged status offender is at imminent risk of being placed in the legal or physical custody of the Department of Human Resources, the case shall be referred to the county children's services facilitation team, and the procedures in Article 5 shall be followed. Upon referral to the county children's services facilitation team, the juvenile probation officer shall continue to provide case management to the status offender unless the county children's services facilitation team appoints another person to act as case manager. The juvenile probation officer shall participate in county children's services facilitation team meetings and share records information and reports on the status offender with the county children's services facilitation team.

(2) FEDERAL WARDS. Federal wards held beyond 24 hours in secure custody in state and local juvenile detention facilities pursuant to a written contract or agreement with a federal agency and for the specific purpose of affecting a jurisdictional transfer or appearance as a material witness or for return to their lawful residence or country of citizenship shall be reported as violations of the deinstitutionalization of status offender requirement.

(3) NONOFFENDERS. Nonoffenders, as defined in this article, shall not be detained or confined in secure custody.

(4) CHILDREN 10 YEARS OF AGE AND YOUNGER. Children 10 years of age and younger shall not be detained or confined in secure custody, unless the children are charged with offenses causing death or serious bodily injury to persons or offenses that would be classified as Class A felonies if committed by adults. Children 11 or 12 years of age may only be detained or confined in secure custody by orders of juvenile courts, unless the children are charged with offenses causing death or serious bodily injury to persons or offenses that would be classified as Class A felonies if committed by adults.

(b) Persons who may be detained or confined in secure custody include all of the following:

(1) Persons who violate the federal law, which prohibits possession of a handgun by a child under the age of 18 years, or who violate a similar state or municipal law, may be placed in secure custody in juvenile detention facilities.

(2) Persons in custody pursuant to the Interstate Compact on Juveniles, contained in Section 44-2-1, et seq., may be placed in secure custody in juvenile detention facilities.

(3) Status offenders who violate a valid court order. A status offender who is charged with or has committed a violation of a valid court order may be detained in secure custody in a juvenile detention facility for up to 72 hours in any six-month period. Status offenders who violate valid court orders shall not be committed to the Department of Youth Services, nor shall they be held in jails or lockups for adult offenders. For this valid court order exception to apply, the following actions must occur whenever a status offender is taken into custody for violating a valid court order:

a. The juvenile detention facility shall immediately notify the juvenile court intake or probation officer that the child is being held in secure custody for violating a valid court order. The notice shall include the date and time the child entered the juvenile detention facility.

b. Within the first 24 hours during which a status offender is held in secure custody for violating a valid court order, not including weekends or holidays, a juvenile court intake or probation officer, or an authorized representative of the department or agency having custody or supervision of the child, shall interview the child, in person.

c. Within 48 hours of the admission of the status offender to secure custody for violating a valid court order, not including weekends or holidays:

1. The individual who interviewed the child shall submit a written assessment report to the juvenile court regarding the immediate needs of the child; and

2. If the juvenile court has not yet determined whether the child has, in fact, violated the order, the juvenile court shall conduct a hearing to determine whether there is reasonable cause to believe that the child violated the order and the appropriate placement of the child pending disposition of the alleged violation.

(c) Compliance with jail removal. No person under the age of 18 years shall be detained or confined in any jail or lockup for adults except for the following exceptions:

(1) A child may be detained in a jail or lockup for adults for up to six hours while processing the case of the child.

(2) A child transferred for criminal prosecution pursuant to Section 12-15-203 may be detained in a jail or lockup for adults.

(3) A person charged pursuant to Section 12-15-204 may be detained in a jail or lockup for adults.

When a case is transferred to another court for criminal prosecution, the person shall be transferred to the appropriate officer or jail or lockup in accordance with the law governing the detention of the person charged with the crime. Jails and lockups used for holding adults shall not hold status offenders in secure custody at any time. An accused status offender may be detained in a nonsecure area of a jail or lockup for processing while waiting transportation to a nonsecure shelter care facility or a juvenile detention facility or while waiting for release to a parent, legal guardian, or legal custodian.

Nothing in this subsection shall prohibit a circuit court judge exercising criminal jurisdiction from recommending that a child described in subdivision (2) or (3) should be placed in a juvenile detention center instead of an adult jail or lockup.

(d) Compliance with separation. Accused or adjudicated delinquent children or status offenders shall not have contact with adult inmates, including trusties. Contact is defined to include any physical or sustained sight and sound contact. Sight contact is defined as clear visual contact between adult inmates and accused or adjudicated delinquent children or status offenders within close proximity to each other. Sound contact is defined as direct verbal communication between adult inmates and accused or adjudicated delinquent children or status offenders.

No child shall enter pursuant to public authority, for any amount of time, in secure custody in a secure section of a jail, lockup, or correctional facility for adults as a disposition of an offense or as a means of modifying his or her behavior (e.g., Shock Incarceration or Scared Straight).

(e) Except as provided above, in providing detention and shelter or other care for children referred to or coming under the jurisdiction of the juvenile court, the juvenile court shall utilize only those facilities as have been established, licensed, or approved by the Department of Youth Services or Department of Human Resources for those purposes.

(f) After October 1, 1991, the Department of Youth Services shall accept all children committed to it within seven days of notice of disposition.

(g) Except as provided above, the official in charge of a jail or lockup for the detention of adult offenders or persons charged with crimes shall inform the juvenile court immediately when a child, who is or appears to be a child as defined by this chapter, is received at the jail or lockup. Upon request, the official shall deliver the child to the juvenile court or transfer him or her to a juvenile detention facility designated by the juvenile court.

(h) The Department of Youth Services shall continue to develop and implement a statewide system of juvenile detention facilities which shall be licensed by the Department of Youth Services for the detention of children.

(i) The Department of Youth Services shall subsidize the detention of children in the juvenile detention facilities in an amount up to one half the average cost of detention, which term is defined in this article, the amount depending on the provision of funds by the Legislature to the Department of Youth Services. Juvenile detention facilities may contract with the Department of Youth Services or other counties for the detention of children.

(j) When a case is transferred to another court for criminal prosecution, the child shall be transferred to the appropriate officer or jail or lockup in accordance with the law governing the detention of the person charged with criminal offenses.

(k) Any law enforcement officer, at the direction of the juvenile court, shall provide security and transportation services for the juvenile court in transporting children to and from juvenile detention facilities.

(Acts 1975, No. 1205, p. 2384, §5-122; Acts 1990, No. 90-674, p. 1304, §9; Acts 1991, No. 91-634, p. 1192, §1; Acts 1996, No. 96-570, p. 864, §1; amended and renumbered by Act 2008-277, p. 441, §12.)