August 13, 2008
JUVENILE SEX OFFENDERS
By: Susan Price, Principal Legislative Analyst
You asked (1) how often juvenile prosecutors use the serious sexual offender prosecution statute and (2) if juvenile sex offenders have to register on the Department of Public Safety's sex offender registry.
It appears that no juvenile has been prosecuted under the serious sexual offender prosecution statute (CGS § 46b-133d), reports Judicial Branch legislative liaison Deborah Fuller. That law, which went into effect October 1, 1999, requires juveniles convicted under it to be sentenced to at least five years of special probation, in addition to their regular sentence, which can last into adulthood.
Information on sex offenders whose cases were adjudicated in juvenile court is not included in the state's sex offender registry.
Serious Juvenile Sexual Offender Prosecution
The statute allows a juvenile prosecutor to ask the court to designate the proceeding a “serious sexual offender prosecution” when a juvenile is accused of a sexually-related crime and the case is not transferred to adult court, Within 30 days of such a request, the court must hold a hearing. The hearing can be delayed on the request of either the juvenile prosecutor or the child for good cause but for no longer than 90 days from the original request.
The court must decide whether to designate the proceeding a serious sexual offender prosecution within 30 days of completing the hearing. The court must grant the request if the juvenile prosecutor shows by a preponderance of the evidence that the designation will serve public safety. The court's decision is not immediately appealable.
If the juvenile is convicted or pleads guilty, the court must sentence the child under the normal juvenile sentencing provisions and also sentence him or her to at least five years of “special juvenile probation” beginning on his release from placement. The probation consists of the juvenile being supervised by a juvenile probation officer until age 18 and supervised by an adult probation officer thereafter. Any probation violation must be handled by the juvenile court if it occurs before the child turns 18 and by the regular criminal docket thereafter.