We've got a juvenile who was given 3 years determinate sentence probation by our juvenile court under TEX. FAM. CODE ANN. sec. 54.04(q).
The juvenile just turned 18 and was transferred to adult court. Now, the adult court wants to place him on deferred adjudication.
My question is can the adult court legally do this? Has anybody had this situation come up? The applicable statute is sec. 54.051(e). As far as I can tell, this provision has never been cited and is far from clear.
On further reflection, it looks like the adult court isn't authorized to place the juvenile on deferred under art. 42.12, sec. 5 because the adult court doesn't receive the juvenile's guilty plea. The only reason for the transfer under sec. 54.015(e) is to place the juvenile on community supervision, not to accept a plea.
Does this sound right to you guys?
[This message was edited by Anne Swenson on 11-19-01 at .]
I don't know, but I will look into it. I know how frustrating it is not to have anyone answer when you ask a question ;-P
I sincerely apologize to both of you for overlooking your queries. As research attorney for TDCAA, it is my responsibility to answer the questions that are proposed by our members, but as webmaster and moderator of the User Forums, I usually do not answer a question for a while in order to give the readers of the forum a chance to reply -- our opinion was that it was better to hear the word from the trenches than from the nerd in front of the computer and the books.
However, I failed to answer these questions long after I normally should have responded, and I am sorry for this.
Anywho, after consulting with several of the attorneys here at TDCAA, and contacting our juvenile gurus across the state, our answer to this question presented is: no one knows. It seems logical that a district court would not be allowed to modify or change the type of community supervision the juvenile is subject to anymore than it could modify the "conditions consistent with those ordered by the juvenile court." However, we have received several reports of district judges doing all kinds of strange things upon having these cases transferred to their courts, including one judge that required the defendant to do jail time even though he had already been serving his probation time. Thus far, nothing has been appealed and published and no AG opinions have been issued concerning the authority of a district judge in these situations, and thus the answer at this time is a simple one: no one knows.
[This message was edited by erik on 11-27-01 at .]
Just off the top of my head and without researching the question, I am pretty sure the judge can't do that. (Obviously, some have, but I don't think is is contemplated in the law. But when did THAT ever stop some judges?) First of all, the adult sentencing statutes don't apply to juveniles - for example - they could never receive deferred adjudication in juvenile court. Secondly, I think the reason they are transferred to a particular court when they are transferred to "adult supervision" is so that if they violate their probation, there will be a court of jurisdiction to revoke and sentence.
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