The teenage brain is often considered a mystery. Multiple studies prove that while the brain is continually developing throughout adolescence and into young adulthood, some areas of the brain are quicker to develop than others. Teenagers who fall victim to abuse while growing up have extended complications involving neurological development. Babies and children who are loved and nurtured tend to develop strong emotional and empathetic neurological pathways, while abused children develop a lack of empathy to help them cope with their negative surroundings. Wisconsin psychologists acknowledge that the extent of this brain damage varies depending on the type of abuse inflicted and the duration of the abuse. Abused individuals have an increased risk of committing juvenile crimes.
When it comes to sentencing children for heinous criminal acts, Wisconsin may be one of the strictest in the nation. Multiple studies show that the developing teenage brain lacks the ability to form mature, rational decisions in many situations, and may be quick to engage in aggressive behaviors. Yet, Wisconsin law mandates that children 10 years of age and older who are charged with attempted homicide or homicide be tried as an adult.
Juvenile crimes are a sensitive subject for many Wisconsin residents. Some teenagers may commit heinous crimes and deserved to be punished. However, many believe the type of punishment inflicted on a teenager should differ from that of an adult. Multiple credible studies have found that teenage brains are still in the process of developing, and operate differently when it comes to controlling aggressive impulses and making decisions. Many teens are simply unable to foresee the consequences of their actions.
Teenagers are made up of a unique blend consisting of genetics and environment. Wisconsin teens who were abused as children, or who may not have developed in normal ways mentally, may even hurt others around them or behave in ways that violate the law. While some adopt the attitude of simply locking the teen up in a juvenile facility, it is important to remember that some teens may not realize that what they were doing was wrong. These teens may have conditions that have gone unnoticed and untreated. However with proper medical attention, teens may be able to go on and lead productive lives.
Although children in Waukesha are often curious to find out how and why things work, playing with fire may result in disaster. Many young adolescents act quickly without realizing that there are consequences to their actions. Peer pressure can also be a factor when children commit destructive acts and juvenile crimes.
When playing and joking around with friends, many Wisconsin teens may make sarcastic comments or jokes that they feel have no bearing on their true feelings. Once a joke or comment is documented on the Internet, a teen may not understand the seriousness of the implications and the possible consequence they may face for a seemingly innocent comment. Juvenile crimes may often be a matter of a teenager not understanding what may happen in the future, and sentencing guidelines often reflect the belief of the legal system that certain teens may be rehabilitated.
Juveniles are often influenced by the things they see on TV and in their homes, and may be unable to distinguish reality from fantasy. Children in Wisconsin who are under a certain age may not have the reasoning ability to determine when they should follow the example of an older role model, and when they should make different decisions. Because of the unique circumstances regarding juvenile crimes, these cases may be handled delicately and more carefully by law enforcement officials and prosecutors.
When a juvenile is charged in a crime, there may be extra steps taken to protect the accused and their family members, if they are legally considered a minor by the state in which the crime occurs. In cases of juvenile crimes, prosecutors in Wisconsin may choose to make an argument for trying the juvenile as an adult if they feel the person was old enough to know what he or she was doing, and what the consequences of his or her actions would be. Adult sentencing guidelines may be stricter than those for juveniles, and many minor may prefer being tried as a juvenile because of this.
The state of Wisconsin has laws in place that protect the privacy and safety of juveniles when they commit a crime, or are accused of committing a crime. Because juvenile crimes are often committed before the person is old enough or mature enough to understand the consequences of their actions, there are often limits on how severe the sentence of the juvenile can be. Some juveniles are only children or teenagers when they commit crimes that are serious enough to have them sentenced to life in prison.