Criminal Justice Task Force Studying Youthful Offenders

BOSTON (AP) — A task force is looking into the treatment of young adults in the state’s criminal justice system.

The panel scheduled to hold its second meeting at the Statehouse on Tuesday was created under a sweeping criminal justice overhaul passed last year by the Legislature.

The task force is studying and could issue recommendations about the age at which youthful defendants should have their cases heard in the juvenile court system.

Under current law, adult court jurisdiction begins at age 18. There have been proposals to raise that age to 19, or as high as 21.

The task force is chaired by Democratic Rep. Paul Tucker, of Salem, and Democratic Sen. Cynthia Creem, of Newton. It’s also examining the feasibility of creating special units for young adults 18-24 within state prisons.

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