This Note takes a closer look at the problems associated with transferring juveniles to adult court by focusing on Ohio's juvenile transfer statute. Part II begins with an analysis of the history of the juvenile court, including its establishment and evolution throughout time. It also includes an analysis of how the common interpretation of the original approach to juvenile crime has created an overly narrow view of how to deal with the problem today. Part III examines the latest crime statistics that reveal a significant drop in juvenile crime. This section also explores various alternative explanations for the apparent rise in juvenile crime during certain periods in the last twenty years. Part IV summarizes the cognitive, emotional, and developmental differences between juveniles and adults that justify a separate system for our young offenders. Part V analyzes the different methods used to transfer juveniles to adult courts, including waiver, direct file, statutory exclusion, and "once an adult, always an adult" provisions. Part VI outlines the 1996 changes made to Ohio's transfer statute for both discretionary and mandatory transfer. Part VII points out the problems associated with Ohio's transfer statute and brings to light inadequacies common to most state statutes that make juvenile transfer easier. It also explores possible alternatives to transfer, including a proposal by the Ohio Criminal Sentencing Commission that suggests eliminating transfer and giving the juvenile court judge the ability to impose adult sentences.
Note, Current Look at Ohio's Juvenile Justice System on the 100th Anniversary of the Juvenile Court, 47 Clev. St. L. Rev. 627 (1999)