TDCAA TDCAA Community Juvenile Law Section 55.44 - Transfer to Criminal Court on 18th Birthday of Child (after a court ordered finding of unfitness to proceed due to mental illnes)
Has anyone ever dealt with this provision of the family code? I am not finding a lot of case law out there on this section and Dawsons just has a basic explanation of the code provision. I have a juvenile who has been found unfit to proceed because of mental illness and has gone through all of the chapter 55 avenues. His 18th birthday is soon approaching and it appears that we are going to have to transfer him under this provision to criminal district court.
Question - Once someone is transferred under this provision of the family code are they treated for all purposes as an adult and do the rules of the Code of Criminal Proceedure then apply?
From my reading of the code, it appears that all proceedings are transfered and the juvenile is treated as an adult for all purposes with the exception of TFC 55.44(B) ie. they cannot receive punishment greater than what they could have received as a juvenile if they are ever found to be competent as an adult (which would be put in the jury charge if the case were to go to trial). Additionaly this would mean that the juvenile/adult would need to be indicted within 90 days? I am assuming that the criminal court could not "institute proceedings under Chapt 46B, Code of Criminal Proceedure" unless it is acting pursuant to an indictment. Thus the juvenile petition would no longer have any bearing what so ever (except the part of it that was a determinate sentence for purposes of sentencing as an adult).
[This message was edited by Taylor_Heaton on 03-11-11 at .]
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