Segments in this Video

Teens in Adult Court (03:06)


200,000 kids are sent through the adult court system each year, and many of them will be locked away in prison for the majority of their lives.

Gangs (04:10)

The author argues that much of the graffiti is not the product of gangs or organized crime, but rather the work of unruly teenagers. He also argues that the media and politicians are unfairly demonizing youth.

Duc's Case (03:44)

The juvenile justice system is no longer keeping kids out of adult prison. Duc, age 16, is serving 35 years to life in state prison for attempted murder, although he had no prior arrest. The suicide rate for kids in prison is eight times higher than it is for the adult population.

Teens Sentenced to Adult Prison (03:44)

All but one of the kids in a class of 12 were convicted and sentenced to adult prison, with sentences that vary greatly. One is still awaiting trial. The environment is chaotic, lonely, and violent, and the kids lose their pride and sense of self.

No Sympathy for Gang Members (04:27)

A young man was given a life sentence for a crime he committed as a teenager, largely due to enhancement laws that increase prison sentences for crimes associated with gangs.

Duc's Story (05:36)

The son of a gang member talks about how his father's gang involvement led to violence and mistrust between them, but eventually they were able to rebuild their relationship.

Mayra's Tattoos (02:45)

Mayra got shot by a rival gang member, and still has a bullet in her head. She regrets her involvement in gangs, and wishes she had made different choices.

The Problem with American Culture is Violence (02:46)

Violence and apathy are the two biggest problems in American culture, and kids manifest those problems. Young people have to act out what they've been handed, and the violence that's coming out of young people has already been handed to them.

Kids are Different from Adults (03:59)

Kids are different from adults and have different abilities when it comes to impulse control because their brains are not fully developed. Age is not the most important factor in predicting how an individual will behave.

Teenage Murderer (02:54)

A young girl is brutally murdered by her boyfriend and his friend. The friends are later tried and convicted of the murder. The victim's family is waiting to hear if the youngest of the group, who was involved in the murder, will be tried as an adult.

Anait's Background (03:09)

Anait was arrested two weeks after her 14th birthday for first degree premeditated murder. She was driving two older boys to a rival high school when they got into a fight. One of the boys was killed. Anait will be tried as an adult.

Teens and the Criminal Justice System (03:20)

Kids are getting longer sentences than adults and are naturally at a disadvantage because most of them do not understand the criminal justice system.

Juvenile Sentences (02:03)

Kids are getting harsher sentences in the adult system, which doesn't offer them hope or rehabilitation. This is causing them to join gangs in prison for protection.

Adolescent Male Psychology (03:02)

Kids who are sent to adult prison have a very high recidivism rate, and there is no rehabilitation in prison.

The Juvenile Situation (02:47)

Inmates who've been in prison for years feel more comfortable talking about what it is like as a juvenile coming into the adult system. The juvenile type situation in prison is ridiculous, and it is hard to cope with it.

Dope Fiends (04:42)

In state prison, the girls frequently end up using drugs and sex to escape, while the boys go towards gangs and violence. For the ones who end up with life, it is harder to hang on.

Revival of Juvenile Justice System (03:11)

The juvenile justice system is not meeting the public's demand for justice, and sentences like Duc's are given to juveniles every day.

Doctor Kipnis' Childhood (05:06)

The documentary highlights the challenges that juvenile offenders face and how society often fails them. It also features a juvenile offender who was able to turn his life around with the help of a second chance.

Credits (00:01)


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Twenty years ago, juveniles committed 30% of all felony arrests. Today, juveniles commit only 15% of all felonies. This is not because they are committing fewer crimes. Narrator Mark Wahlberg points out that over 200,000 children are sent through the adult court system each year. The film follows 12 juveniles, who were all prosecuted as adults. The filmmakers taught a video production class to kids in Eastlake Central Juvenile Hall, Los Angeles to encourage them to open up about their lives and the choices they made that brought them to juvenile hall.

Length: 66 minutes

Item#: BVL216128

Copyright date: ©2004

Closed Captioned

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