PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThe juvenile justice system was established with the intent of rehabilitation and forgiveness of childhood stupidity. As a country, we have recognized that children under the age of 18 lack the mental capacity to thoroughly understand the consequences of their actions. However, when it comes to sexting, our juvenile justice system is failing our youth. If an adult is caught with sexually explicit photographs, it is a felony. As adults, we believe that possession of such material is an attack on the very moral fiber of our being. But what if a sixteen-year- old has a photo (taken willing by his underage girlfriend) on his cell phone? Common sense would dictate that our juvenile justice system would educate both parties on why this behavior is so risky. What is taking place in half the states across the country is that we are trying both children as adult sex offenders. If found guilty there is mandatory jail time plus the requirement to register as a sex offender. These mandatory sentencing requirements go against the very premise of our juvenile system. These requirements do more than shame the parties involved; these requirements are ruining children’s futures.
Degree ProgramHonors College