Where a court finds a young person guilty of an offence they will then decide upon a sentence. This is not just intended to be a punishment, it is to protect the public and ensure that the young person engages in work to address their offending behaviour.
The courts have many sentencing options:
- Sentences can be custodial - where the young person is considered dangerous or otherwise a risk to the public and should be locked up
- Can be made subject to an order from the court and supervised in the community by the youth offending service
Court orders must be complied with; where they are not the young person will be returned to court and they may consider re-sentencing.
Courts can also issue Parenting Orders so that parents must attend parenting intervention schemes where it is feels this will help prevent further offending by the young person.
For more information visit the Youth Justice Board website.
The Youth Offending Service provides information and assessments for the court to inform sentencing decisions. Pre-Sentence reports are requested by the court and include an analysis of the offence, the young person's circumstances and the reasons for their behaviour, the impact on the victim and a proposal for a suitable sentence.
Bail and Remand
The court may decide to bail a young person to attend a future court hearing with conditions, including:
- a curfew to stay away from prosecution witnesses
- restricting their movements
- reporting to a police station at certain times
- a programme of support from the Youth Offending Service
Contact on bail support is offered three times a week to address welfare concerns and help prevent re-offending.
The court may remand a young person to the care of the local authority, in which case they become a 'looked after child' for the remand period. The Youth Offending Service directs the young person to live where their needs will be best met, and in the interests of protecting the public. This can be with a family member or specially recruited and trained foster carers with the support from the service. If the court orders a secure remand, officers liaise with the Youth Justice Board to find bed space and ensure the young person is escorted there.
For more information visit Her Majesty's Court Service website.