After you are interviewed
Following an interview the police have number of options:
- They can release you without charge (NFA)
- Bail you pending further enquiries
- Administer a Reprimand
- Make a referral to the Youth Offending Service with a view to issuing a final warning at a later date (and bail you to return to the police station at that date)
- If you have not admitted your guilt or it is a serious offence you will be charged and normally bailed to appear before the next available court. If you live in Huntingdonshire this will usually be in Huntingdon, if in Fenland this will usually be in Peterborough, Huntingdon or Kings Lynn or if you live in East Cambs, South Cambs or Cambridge City this will be in Cambridge.
If you receive a Reprimand your details will be passed to the Youth Offending Service (YOS) who will send a letter to you and your parents offering advice and guidance to help prevent you offending in the future.
If a Final Warning is proposed you will be visited by a member of the Youth Offending Team who will carry out a assessment to see if you are suitable for a Final Warning. If they feel that there are some areas of work which will help reduce your offending they will offer a Final Warning Programme which may include a element of Reparation (unpaid work to make amends for your offence).
Appearing in court
If you have received both of these types of orders, or if the offence was serious, you will normally appear before the youth court. Only if a guilty plea is entered will the magistrates be able to deal with you on the day. Generally if you appear in court for the first time, the court will make a referral order for up to 12 months, though there are other options including discharging you from the court with a warning called an absolute discharge.
A referral order is intended to help a young person address their behaviour and allows them to say sorry to the victim and carry out reparation. A contract is agreed with a specially trained panel of volunteers and the order is supervised by a YOS officer.
Punishments for further offences
If a young person returns to court having committed further offences the court can impose the following orders:
- Reparation Orders
Up to 24hrs reparation to the Community or the victim. This is done in the offender's own time normally at the weekends or during holidays
- Youth Rehabilitation Order
This can be up to 3 years and is made up of different requirements, decided by the court.
The requirements could include:
Supervision - to see someone from the YOS usually between 3 times a week and once a month.
Curfew - requiring a young person to be inside their house between the hours set by the court. Equipment is installed on the offender and at their house to allow a private company to monitor them.
Activities - to take part in reparation, which is work in the community to make up for the the offence committed.
Unpaid work - to complete community service, supervised by Probation.
Attendance Centre - to attend once a fortnight in Cambridge, Peterborough or Kings Lynn for 2 hours, to get involved in a physical activity session followed by an educational session.
Education - to assist with improving attendance at school if lack of attendance is associated with your offending.
- Intensive Supervision and Surveillance - a very intensive programme of 25 hours per week working with the YOS as well as having a curfew.
- Financial Penalty
The court can impose fines, compensation and court costs. If you are under 16 yrs of age your parents are made liable to repay this
- Parenting Order
Again if you are under 16 the court has a duty to impose a parenting order on your parents if it believes it will be desirable to prevent you offending. This means your parents may have to attend sessions which will assist them in dealing with your behaviour in the future
- Detention and Training Order
Courts can send young people to prison-type detention for up to 2 years in youth court cases and longer in crown court cases. You will normally serve half your sentence in custody and the remaining time on licence to the YOS. If you offend again or do not follow the conditions of the license you can be sent back to custody
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