Virginian-Pilot supports greater judicial discretion in sentencing youths tried as adults, cites JustChildren transfer report
A Virginian-Pilot op-ed piece from December 22nd, 2010, calls for the General Assembly to support measures that would enable judges to give juvenile adjudications to youths tried as adults. Currently, it is possible for a youth tried as an adult to receive a juvenile sentence if convicted, but the conviction itself would still be of the adult felony charge.
Such a felony conviction can wreak permanent havoc on a child's education, job prospects and social development. If judges were able to give a youth a juvenile adjudication along with the juvenile sentence, the youth would conceivably have fewer barriers to a successful reentry into the community -- a goal that serves us all.
JustChildren has authored two reports on juvenile transfer. The 2009 report cited in the op-ed can be found here (PDF). The most recent report, titled "Unlocking the Truth" and released in November 2010, can be found here (PDF).
You can also find more information on the issue of juvenile transfer in Virginia via the Don't Throw Away the Key campaign.