KQED 10-12-16

Lisa Thurau leading a game of Juvenile Justice Jeopardy. [Laura Klivans/KQED]

Lisa Thurau leading a game of Juvenile Justice Jeopardy. [Laura Klivans/KQED]

Why San Francisco Rarely Sends Youth Directly to Adult Court

Direct file is a practice by which a district attorney—not a judge—can decide if a minor as young as 14 will go to adult court.

The practice is used differently across California’s 58 counties. But whether direct file will continue to be used in the state is up for a vote.

It’s on the ballot this November under Proposition 57, a broader criminal justice reform initiative backed by Gov. Jerry Brown. If it passes, young people would be required to have a hearing in front of a judge to determine whether their trial would go to adult court or stay in the juvenile system. …

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