Glossary of Terms
Understanding Juvenile Justice
Adjudication – The process of rendering a judicial decision as to whether the facts alleged in a Petition or other pleading are true.
Advocate General – a representative of a youth in matters involving deprivation of liberty. He or she aids in the resolution of grievances and allegations of mistreatment of the youth.
Amenability – the likelihood of reasonable rehabilitation of the juvenile by the use of procedures and facilities currently available to the Juvenile Court.
Arraignment – A hearing in which a youth appears in court to answer to the allegations of the petition.
AFC – absent from care
Certification – The process of transferring a juvenile’s case from the juvenile court to the adult court for trial.
Custody – The right or responsibility for a juvenile’s care and control, carrying with it the duty of providing food, shelter, medical care, education, and treatment. OJA custody is temporary.
Disposition – After adjudication, a plan for the delinquent juvenile is formulated. This plan will include a set of rules to follow. This may include the juvenile being placed on probation or into the custody of OJA.
Diversion – referral to services outside of the juvenile court system.
Felony – A serious crime, generally punishable by imprisonment for a minimum of one year.
Juvenile Bureau – Counties with populations of 100,000 or more providing intake (preliminary inquiry) and probation services to juveniles. Counties with Juvenile Bureaus consist of Comanche, Canadian, Oklahoma and Tulsa.
Misdemeanor – A crime less serious than a felony, usually punishable by a fine or incarceration for less than one year.
OJA – the Office of Juvenile Affairs
Petition – A pleading filed to initiate a matter in juvenile court, setting forth the alleged grounds for a court to assume jurisdiction and hear the case.
Preliminary Inquiry or Intake - a mandatory, pre-adjudicatory interview of the juvenile and, if available, the parents, legal guardian, or other custodian of the juvenile, which is performed by a duly authorized individual to determine whether a juvenile comes within the purview of the Oklahoma Juvenile Code, whether non adjudicatory alternatives are available and appropriate, and if the filing of a petition is necessary.
Probation – A disposition which allows the youth to remain in the community under the supervision of a Juvenile Bureau probation officer or an OJA juvenile justice specialist and requiring compliance with probationary rules and individualized treatment plans.
Reintegration – returning the youth to his/her family and/or community following an out-of-home placement.
Revocation – a hearing process by which parole status may be terminated or in some cases, probation status terminated and the youth placed in custody.
Status Offense – non-criminal misbehavior(s) which would not be criminal if committed by an adult, for example: truancy, curfew violation, runaway, and in need of supervision. These are not statutorily detainable offenses.
Stipulation – after agreement between the attorneys in a case, entered in court, allowing a certain fact to be established into evidence without the necessity for further proof. Depending on the nature of the proceedings, stipulations may be either written or oral.
Youthful Offender - it is the purpose of the Youthful Offender Act (YO) to better ensure the public safety by holding youths 15, 16 and 17 years old accountable for the commission of serious crimes, while affording courts methods of rehabilitation for those youths in the custody or supervision of OJA. Jurisdiction can be extended to 18.5 years old for crimes committed before November 1, 2018 and until 19 years old for crimes committed after November 1, 2018.