Prosecutor is right to keep Sayreville football players in juvenile system rather than try them in adult court

Affiliate: ACLU of New Jersey
November 12, 2014 10:28 am


ACLU Affiliate
ACLU of New Jersey
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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: 212-549-2666, media@aclu.org

ACLU of New Jersey Senior Staff Attorney Alexander Shalom made the following statement about reports that seven Sayreville football players charged with sexual assault will be tried as juveniles:

The decision to prosecute the seven Sayreville High School football players as juveniles is the correct one, and we commend the Middlesex County prosecutor for making the right choice in a sexual assault case that has shocked the public conscience and roiled the community.

The decision does not diminish the seriousness of the crimes alleged in the Sayreville case. Sexual assaults — indeed, rapes — such as those reported in the press should not be condoned as horseplay or trivialized under the term hazing. But asking that kids be treated like kids — that children get access to rehabilitative services that will reduce their likelihood of recidivism — is not the same as suggesting that they evade punishment. It is, however, recognizing that finding justice is not as simple as seeking retribution.

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