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Juvenile Delinquency

Kane County Juvenile Justice Center​​​

​​​The Juvenile Delinquency Division is responsible for prosecuting defendants who are younger than 18 years old when the alleged crime was committed.

Delinquency cases are initiated through a referral or by arrest and detention. When a minor is taken into custody, a detention hearing must be held within 40 hours -- excluding court holidays and weekends -- to determine whether the minor shall remain in custody. If a judge finds probable cause and an immediate need to protect the minor or the community, the court may order further detention. Otherwise, the court may release the minor to home detention or to the custody of a parent or guardian.

​When a minor is not taken into custody, the case is referred to Kane County Juvenile Court Services. From there it may be diverted through Juvenile Court Services or it may be sent to the Juvenile Delinquency Division of the Kane County State's Attorney's Office for prosecution.

A juvenile who has a delinquency petition filed against him or her and is found guilty of a crime can be adjudicated delinquent and can be sentenced to supervision or probation. A juvenile also may be sentenced to up to 30 days in jail or committed to the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice until his or her 21st birthday. Serious cases involving charges such as murder, aggravated criminal sexual assault and aggravated battery with a firearm in which the alleged offender personally discharged the gun are prosecuted in adult court. Other serious offenses may be transferred to adult court depending on the alleged offense and the juvenile's age.

Juvenile court hearings are closed to the general public, but members of the media are allowed to attend.

What else do you need to know?

  • A juvenile is classified as someone who is younger than 18 at the time of the alleged crime.
  • A parent must be present with the minor at every court date. This is true even when the case progresses past the minor's 18th birthday.
  • A minor in court must be represented by an attorney.
  • Parents are named on the petitions as "parties" and must be served, even if one parent has not had contact with the minor.
  • Most detained juvenile offenders are held in the Kane County Juvenile Detention Center, which is a wing of the Juvenile Justice Center. Only family members are allowed to visit juvenile offenders. For visitation hours and days, call the Juvenile Justice Center at (630) 406-7480.
  • Depending on the severity of the crime, the defendant's age and the victim's age, some cases are automatically transferred to adult court.
  • The law allows the state's attorney to ask the court to transfer juvenile defendants to adult court for certain offenses. If such a request is made, the judge will set a date to hear arguments and then decide whether the juvenile will be transferred.
  • A juvenile offender who is found guilty of a crime can be sentenced to supervision, probation, up to 30 days in jail or imprisonment in the Illinois Department of Corrections' Juvenile Division until his or her 21st birthday.
  • Only parties to the case are allowed access to information on the case because of confidentiality rules.
  • A party to the case can view the court file at the Kane County Circuit Court Clerk's Office at 540 S. Randall Road, St. Charles, with valid identification. The Circuit Court Clerk's Office is prohibited from giving this information over the telephone. If you have questions or concerns, you should contact  your lawyer.
  • Although they are not prohibited from doing so, the media generally does not report the names of juvenile offenders. However, there are exceptions, which vary depending on the newspaper, radio station or television station, and the severity of the crime. The courts and state's attorney'​s office have no influence over what a media outlet chooses to report. Juvenile court records are not open to the media. However, the juvenile courtrooms are open to the media.
  • A juvenile defendant can remain in the court system as a juvenile up to their 21st birthday.
  • If you wish to report crime involving a juvenile offender, call the police.