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General Assembly

File No. 123

    February Session, 2018

Substitute House Bill No. 5328

House of Representatives, March 29, 2018

The Committee on Children reported through REP. URBAN of the 43rd Dist., Chairperson of the Committee on the part of the House, that the substitute bill ought to pass.

AN ACT CONCERNING THE ADMISSIBILITY OF ADMISSIONS, CONFESSIONS AND STATEMENTS BY CHILDREN UNDER THE AGE OF EIGHTEEN.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Assembly convened:

Section 1. Section 46b-137 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective July 1, 2018):

(a) Any admission, confession or statement, written or oral, made by a child under the age of [sixteen] eighteen to a police officer or Juvenile Court official shall be inadmissible in any proceeding concerning the alleged delinquency of the child making such admission, confession or statement unless made by such child in the presence of the child's parent or parents or guardian [and] or after the parent or parents or guardian and child have been advised (1) of the child's right to retain counsel, or if unable to afford counsel, to have counsel appointed on the child's behalf, (2) of the child's right to refuse to make any statements, and (3) that any statements the child makes may be introduced into evidence against the child.

[(b) Any admission, confession or statement, written or oral, made by a child sixteen or seventeen years of age to a police officer or Juvenile Court official, except an admission, confession or statement, written or oral, made by a child sixteen or seventeen years of age to a police officer in connection with a case transferred to the Juvenile Court from the youthful offender docket, regular criminal docket of the Superior Court or any docket for the presentment of defendants in motor vehicle matters, shall be inadmissible in any proceeding concerning the alleged delinquency of the child making such admission, confession or statement, unless (1) the police or Juvenile Court official has made reasonable efforts to contact a parent or guardian of the child, and (2) such child has been advised that (A) the child has the right to contact a parent or guardian and to have a parent or guardian present during any interview, (B) the child has the right to retain counsel or, if unable to afford counsel, to have counsel appointed on behalf of the child, (C) the child has the right to refuse to make any statement, and (D) any statement the child makes may be introduced into evidence against the child.

(c) The admissibility of any admission, confession or statement, written or oral, made by a child sixteen or seventeen years of age to a police officer or Juvenile Court official, except an admission, confession or statement, written or oral, made by a child sixteen or seventeen years of age to a police officer in connection with a case transferred to the Juvenile Court from the youthful offender docket, regular criminal docket of the Superior Court or any docket for the presentment of defendants in motor vehicle matters, shall be determined by considering the totality of the circumstances at the time of the making of such admission, confession or statement. When determining the admissibility of such admission, confession or statement, the court shall consider (1) the age, experience, education, background and intelligence of the child, (2) the capacity of the child to understand the advice concerning rights and warnings required under subdivision (2) of subsection (b) of this section, the nature of the privilege against self-incrimination under the United States and Connecticut Constitutions, and the consequences of waiving such rights and privilege, (3) the opportunity the child had to speak with a parent, guardian or some other suitable individual prior to or while making such admission, confession or statement, and (4) the circumstances surrounding the making of the admission, confession or statement, including, but not limited to, (A) when and where the admission, confession or statement was made, (B) the reasonableness of proceeding, or the need to proceed, without a parent or guardian present, and (C) the reasonableness of efforts by the police or Juvenile Court official to attempt to contact a parent or guardian.]

[(d)] (b) Any confession, admission or statement, written or oral, made by the parent or parents or guardian of the child or youth after the filing of a petition alleging such child or youth to be neglected, uncared for or abused shall be inadmissible in any proceeding held upon such petition against the person making such admission or statement unless such person shall have been advised of the person's right to retain counsel, and that if the person is unable to afford counsel, counsel will be appointed to represent the person, that the person has a right to refuse to make any statement and that any statements the person makes may be introduced in evidence against the person, except that any statement made by the mother of any child or youth, upon inquiry by the court and under oath if necessary, as to the identity of any person who might be the father of the child or youth shall not be inadmissible if the mother was not so advised.

This act shall take effect as follows and shall amend the following sections:

Section 1

July 1, 2018

46b-137

KID

Joint Favorable Subst.

 

The following Fiscal Impact Statement and Bill Analysis are prepared for the benefit of the members of the General Assembly, solely for purposes of information, summarization and explanation and do not represent the intent of the General Assembly or either chamber thereof for any purpose. In general, fiscal impacts are based upon a variety of informational sources, including the analyst's professional knowledge. Whenever applicable, agency data is consulted as part of the analysis, however final products do not necessarily reflect an assessment from any specific department.


OFA Fiscal Note

State Impact: None

Municipal Impact: None

Explanation

The bill makes a procedural change to the rules of admission, confessions, and statements and does not result in a fiscal impact.

The Out Years

State Impact: None

Municipal Impact: None

OLR Bill Analysis

sHB 5328

AN ACT CONCERNING THE ADMISSIBILITY OF ADMISSIONS, CONFESSIONS AND STATEMENTS BY CHILDREN UNDER THE AGE OF EIGHTEEN.

SUMMARY

This bill (1) narrows the circumstances in which the admission, confession, or statement of a child under age 16 to a police officer or juvenile court official is inadmissible in a delinquency proceeding and (2) broadens the inadmissibility criteria for such admissions, confessions, or statements made by a 16- or 17-year-old.

Under the bill, a written or oral admission, confession, or statement a child under age 18 makes to a police officer or juvenile court official is admissible in juvenile court if (1) given in the presence of his or her parents or guardian or (2) the parents or guardian and child have been advised that (a) the child has the right to an attorney and to remain silent and (b) any statement he or she makes may be introduced as evidence against him or her. Under current law, such an admission, confession, or statement of a child under age 16 is only admissible if one or both of the child's parents or the child's guardian was present and those present were advised of the above rights.

Currently, with some exceptions (see below), a 16- or 17-year-old's statement, admission, or confession to a police officer or juvenile court official is admissible if (1) the officer or official made reasonable efforts to contact the child's parent or guardian and (2) the child was advised of the above rights and that he or she has the right to contact a parent or guardian and have the parent or guardian present during any interview. The bill eliminates these provisions and a provision that requires the court to determine admissibility in such circumstances based on the totality of the circumstances at the time the child made the statement, admission, or confession.

Current law also exempts from the above-described admissibility standards a 16- or 17-year old's statement, admission, or confession to a police officer or juvenile court official in connection with a case transferred to the juvenile court docket from the youthful offender, adult criminal, or motor vehicle docket. (Thus, such statements are generally admissible under current law.) The bill eliminates these provisions and, in doing so, also eliminates the distinction between how these statements, admissions, or confessions are handled if the case originates in juvenile court as opposed to being transferred to juvenile court from another docket.

EFFECTIVE DATE: July 1, 2018

COMMITTEE ACTION

Committee on Children

Joint Favorable Substitute

Yea

10

Nay

3

(03/15/2018)

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