Friday, July 03, 2009

Juvenile Waived To Adult Court In Reckless Auto Death

Interest of E.L.C., no. 08-1483 (Iowa Ct. App. July 2, 2009)

E.L.C., a seventeen year old juvenile struck a van with her automobile, then ran a red light and killed a motorcyclist. She then drove away and crashed into a light pole and again attempted to wander off into the gloaming but was restrained by bystanders until police arrived.

As she was a juvenile the state filed a delinquency petition charging her with leaving the scene of an accident where a death occurred and a raft of other offenses. The State sought to have her waived into adult court but the district court demurred. This appeal followed.

The Court of Appeals observed that there was little chance that the remedies and rehabilitation provided for in the juvenile system would have had much effect in the two week period before she aged out of the system. The district court abused its discretion in concluding that the state had not met its burden to show that waiver to the adult system was not in ELCs or the community's best interests.


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