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A truancy case against juvenile, heard in JP court, is appealed by juvenile. Does the case go to the Juvenile Court (District Court, here) or to County Court at Law as a "normal" de novo appeal from the JP? I suspect it must go to the Juvenile (District) Court, as the referring court, but can find no black letter authority. Thanks.
Posts: 4 | Location: Nacogdoches, Tx, USA | Registered: December 23, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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When the occasional truancy case is sent to be prosecuted in juvenile court, we are usually in the middle of something entirely different and don�t want to deal with it unless it appears very serious. Usually, the juvenile is either already in the juvenile system, which makes prosecution as a probation violation easy, or we just send the juvenile to the first offenders program and never hear from him again. Every once in a while we will file a CINs petition based entirely on truancy under 51.03 and put a juvenile on SL3.

If your case were for failure to attend school under 25.094 the Education Code, it is a Class C Misdemeanor for which I do not think the juvenile court has jurisdiction (unless it were transferred or is transferable under 51.08), and it would go to county court. If it were truancy defined as delinquent conduct under 51.03 (CINs petition), and the juvenile court had already gone to JP court, and the juvenile court had waived its original jurisdiction under � 54.021, I wonder if the only right of appeal would be to the court of appeals.

The easiest option, if you want to act and to get this individual into the juvenile system, would be to file a new CINs petition in juvenile court. If they want an appeal, let them act there under your new petition. If there is a double jeopardy problem, and there is not new evidence to base a CINs petition on by this point, perhaps the juvenile can just go back to school and know that you are ready to act if you find out that they are skipping out any more.

Beyond this confusion, if you cannot work this case out, hold it over their head, or file a CINs, I think that the best option would probably be to look at the charging petition and the juvenile�s relationship to the juvenile system, then to act on the option you think is most appropriate, and then to let the juvenile either challenge it or let the court you decide is appropriate to act on it however that court sees fit.

I hope I didn�t just muddy the waters any further....
Posts: 18 | Location: Galveston, TX | Registered: December 12, 2003Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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