Children who commit ‘big people crime’ can sometimes be tried in adult court – Children’s Advocate
Children’s Advocate Diahann Gordon-Harrison is warning that children (persons under 18) can face procedures in court which are usually reserved for adults, depending on the circumstances.
“We have a very specific regime in Jamaica that allows the Children’s Court to have jurisdiction in matters where children are in conflict with the law,” she explained while speaking Monday on RJR’s Beyond the Headlines.
But she also clarified that the Criminal Justice Administration Act also recognizes that “sometimes, especially when there is the concept of Joint Enterprise or Common Design, whereby the child is in concert with others or acting along with other persons in what is considered a ‘big people crime’ such as murder… that child now becomes eligible to be tried along with adults in a traditional court, which is not necessarily a Children’s Court.”
The issue is not new, but it recently arose following the arrest of dancehall artiste Mavado’s sixteen-year-old son.
The teenager has been charged with murder and other offences.
Questions have surfaced about whether he should be tried as an adult.