Substitute House Bill No. 5028
Public Act No. 00-177
An Act Concerning Youth In Crisis.
Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:
Section 1. Section 46b-120 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof:
The terms used in this chapter shall, in its interpretation and in the interpretation of other statutes, be defined as follows: (1) "Child" means any person under sixteen years of age and, for purposes of delinquency matters, "child" means any person (A) under sixteen years of age or, (B) sixteen years of age or older who, prior to attaining sixteen years of age, has violated any federal or state law or municipal or local ordinance, other than an ordinance regulating behavior of a child in a family with service needs, and, subsequent to attaining sixteen years of age, violates any order of the Superior Court or any condition of probation ordered by the Superior Court with respect to such delinquency proceeding; (2) "youth" means any person sixteen to eighteen years of age; (3) "youth in crisis" means any person sixteen to seventeen years of age who, within the last two years, (A) has without just cause run away from the parental home or other properly authorized and lawful place of abode; (B) is beyond the control of parents, guardian or other custodian; or (C) has four unexcused absences from school in any one month or ten unexcused absences in any school year; [(3)] (4) "abused" means that a child or youth (A) has [had] been inflicted with physical injury or injuries [inflicted upon him] other than by accidental means, or (B) has injuries which are at variance with the history given of them, or (C) is in a condition which is the result of maltreatment such as, but not limited to, malnutrition, sexual molestation or exploitation, deprivation of necessities, emotional maltreatment or cruel punishment; [(4)] (5) a child may be found "mentally deficient" who, by reason of a deficiency of intelligence, which has existed from birth or from early age, requires, or will require, for his protection or for the protection of others, special care, supervision and control; [(5)] (6) a child may be convicted as "delinquent" who has violated (A) any federal or state law or municipal or local ordinance, other than an ordinance regulating behavior of a child in a family with service needs, (B) any order of the Superior Court, or (C) conditions of probation as ordered by the court; [(6)] (7) a child or youth may be found "dependent" whose home is a suitable one for [him] the child or youth, save for the financial inability of [his] parents, parent, guardian or other person maintaining such home, to provide the specialized care [his] the condition of the child or youth requires; [(7)] (8) a "family with service needs" means a family which includes a child who (A) has without just cause run away from [his] the parental home or other properly authorized and lawful place of abode; (B) is beyond the control of [his] parent, parents, guardian or other custodian; (C) has engaged in indecent or immoral conduct; (D) is a truant or habitual truant or who, while in school, has been continuously and overtly defiant of school rules and regulations; or (E) is thirteen years of age or older and has engaged in sexual intercourse with another person and such other person is thirteen years of age or older and not more than two years older or younger than such child; [(8)] (9) a child or youth may be found "neglected" who (A) has been abandoned or (B) is being denied proper care and attention, physically, educationally, emotionally or morally or (C) is being permitted to live under conditions, circumstances or associations injurious to [his] the well-being of the child or youth or (D) has been abused; [(9)] (10) a child or youth may be found "uncared for" who is homeless or whose home cannot provide the specialized care which [his] the physical, emotional or mental condition of the child requires. For the purposes of this section the treatment of any child by an accredited Christian Science practitioner in lieu of treatment by a licensed practitioner of the healing arts, shall not of itself constitute neglect or maltreatment; [(10)] (11) "delinquent act" means the violation of any federal or state law or municipal or local ordinance, other than an ordinance regulating the behavior of a child in a family with service needs, or the violation of any order of the Superior Court; [(11)] (12) "serious juvenile offense" means (A) the violation by a child, including attempt or conspiracy to violate sections 21a-277, 21a-278, 29-33, 29-34, 29-35, 53-21, 53-80a, 53-202b, 53-202c, 53-390 to 53-392, inclusive, 53a-54a to 53a-57, inclusive, 53a-59 to 53a-60c, inclusive, 53a-70 to 53a-71, inclusive, 53a-72b, 53a-86, 53a-92 to 53a-94a, inclusive, 53a-95, 53a-101, 53a-102a, 53a-103a, 53a-111 to 53a-113, inclusive, subdivision (1) of subsection (a) of section 53a-122, subdivision (3) of subsection (a) of section 53a-123, 53a-134, 53a-135, 53a-136a, 53a-166, 53a-167c, subsection (a) of section 53a-174, 53a-196a, 53a-211, 53a-212, 53a-216 or 53a-217b, or (B) running away, without just cause, from any secure placement other than home while referred as a delinquent child to the Office of Alternative Sanctions or committed as a delinquent child to the Commissioner of Children and Families for a serious juvenile offense; [(12)] (13) "serious juvenile offender" means any child convicted as delinquent for commission of a serious juvenile offense; [(13)] (14) "serious juvenile repeat offender" means any child charged with the commission of any felony if such child has previously been convicted delinquent at any age for two violations of any provision of title 21a, 29, 53 or 53a which is designated as a felony; [(14)] (15) "alcohol-dependent child" means any child who has a psychoactive substance dependence on alcohol as that condition is defined in the most recent edition of the American Psychiatric Association's "Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders"; [(15)] (16) "drug-dependent child" means any child who has a psychoactive substance dependence on drugs as that condition is defined in the most recent edition of the American Psychiatric Association's "Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders". No child shall be classified as drug dependent who is dependent (A) upon a morphine-type substance as an incident to current medical treatment of a demonstrable physical disorder other than drug dependence, or (B) upon amphetamine-type, ataractic, barbiturate-type, hallucinogenic or other stimulant and depressant substances as an incident to current medical treatment of a demonstrable physical or psychological disorder, or both, other than drug dependence.
Sec. 2. Section 46b-121 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof:
(a) Juvenile matters in the civil session include all proceedings concerning uncared-for, neglected or dependent children and youth within this state, termination of parental rights of children committed to a state agency, matters concerning families with service needs, contested matters involving termination of parental rights or removal of guardian transferred from the Probate Court, [and] the emancipation of minors and youth in crisis, but does not include matters of guardianship and adoption or matters affecting property rights of any child, [or] youth or youth in crisis over which the Probate Court has jurisdiction, provided appeals from probate concerning adoption, termination of parental rights and removal of a parent as guardian shall be included. Juvenile matters in the criminal session include all proceedings concerning delinquent children in the state and persons sixteen years of age and older who are under the supervision of a juvenile probation officer while on probation or a suspended commitment to the Department of Children and Families, for purposes of enforcing any court orders entered as part of such probation or suspended commitment.
(b) In juvenile matters, the Superior Court shall have authority to make and enforce such orders directed to parents, including any person who acknowledges before said court paternity of a child born out of wedlock, guardians, custodians or other adult persons owing some legal duty to a child, [or] youth or youth in crisis therein, as it deems necessary or appropriate to secure the welfare, protection, proper care and suitable support of a child, [or] youth or youth in crisis subject to its jurisdiction or otherwise committed to or in the custody of the Commissioner of Children and Families. In addition, with respect to proceedings concerning delinquent children, the Superior Court shall have authority to make and enforce such orders as it deems necessary or appropriate to punish the child, deter the child from the commission of further delinquent acts, assure that the safety of any other person will not be endangered and provide restitution to any victim. Said court shall also have authority to grant and enforce injunctive relief, temporary or permanent in all proceedings concerning juvenile matters. If any order for the payment of money is issued by said court, including any order assessing costs issued under section 46b-134 or 46b-136, the collection of such money shall be made by said court, except orders for support of children committed to any state agency or department, which orders shall be made payable to and collected by the Department of Administrative Services. Where the court after due diligence is unable to collect such moneys within six months, it shall refer such case to the Department of Administrative Services for collection as a delinquent account. In juvenile matters, the court shall have authority to make and enforce orders directed to persons liable hereunder on petition of said Department of Administrative Services made to said court in the same manner as is provided in section 17b-745, in accordance with the provisions of section 17b-81, 17b-223, subsection (b) of section 17b-179, section 17a-90, 46b-129 or 46b-130, and all of the provisions of section 17b-745 shall be applicable to such proceedings. Any judge hearing a juvenile matter may make any other order in connection therewith [within his authority] that a judge of the Superior Court is authorized to grant [as a judge of the Superior Court] and such order shall have the same force and effect as any other order of the Superior Court. In the enforcement of its orders, in connection with any juvenile matter, the court may issue process for the arrest of any person, compel attendance of witnesses and punish for contempt by a fine not exceeding one hundred dollars or imprisonment not exceeding six months. Following an adjudication by the court, a fee of two hundred dollars shall be assessed by the court against the parents, guardian or custodian of any child, [or] youth or youth in crisis whenever the services of the probation staff for juvenile matters is required.
Sec. 3. (NEW) (a) Any selectman, town manager, police officer or welfare department of any town, city or borough, probation officer, superintendent of schools, any child-caring institution or agency approved or licensed by the Commissioner of Children and Families, any youth service bureau, a parent or foster parent of a youth, or a representative of youth, who believes that the acts or omissions of a youth are such that such youth is a youth in crisis may file a written complaint setting forth those facts with the Superior Court which has venue over that matter.
(b) A petition alleging that a youth is a youth in crisis shall be verified and filed with the Superior Court which has venue over the matter. The petition shall set forth plainly: (1) The facts which bring the youth within the jurisdiction of the court; (2) the name, date of birth, sex and residence of the child; (3) the name and residence of the parent or parents, guardian or other person having control of the youth; and (4) a prayer for appropriate action by the court in conformity with the provisions of this section.
(c) Upon determination that a youth is a youth in crisis in accordance with policies established by the Chief Court Administrator, the court may make and enforce orders, including, but not limited to, orders: (1) Prohibiting the youth in crisis from driving a motor vehicle for a time determined by the court; (2) requiring work or specified community service; (3) mandating that the youth in crisis attend an educational program in the local community approved by the court; and (4) requiring mental health services. A youth in crisis found to be in violation of any order under this section shall not be considered to be delinquent and shall not be punished by the court by incarceration in any state-operated detention facility or correctional facility.
Sec. 4. (NEW) (a) Any police officer who receives a report from the parent or guardian of a youth in crisis, as defined in section 46b-120 of the general statutes, as amended by this act, may attempt to locate the youth in crisis. If the officer locates such youth in crisis, such officer may report the location of the youth to the parent or guardian in accordance with the provisions of federal and state law after such officer determines that such report does not place the youth in any physical or emotional harm. In addition the police officer may: (1) Transport the youth in crisis to the home of the child's parent or guardian or any other person; (2) refer the youth in crisis to the Superior Court for juvenile matters in the district where the youth in crisis is located; (3) hold the youth in crisis in protective custody for a maximum period of twelve hours until the officer can determine a more suitable disposition of the matter, provided (A) the youth in crisis is not held in any cell designed or used for adults, and (B) the officer may release the youth in crisis at any time without taking further action; or (4) transport or refer a youth in crisis to any public or private agency serving children, with or without the agreement of the youth in crisis. If a youth in crisis is transported or referred to an agency pursuant to this section, such agency shall provide temporary services to the youth in crisis unless or until the parent or guardian of the youth in crisis at any time refuses to agree to those services.
(b) Any police officer acting in accordance with the provisions of this section shall be deemed to be acting in the course of official duties.
Sec. 5. This act shall take effect July 1, 2001.
Approved June 1, 2000