Juvenile

Juvenile Correctional Facilities

Handles cases involving juveniles under the age of (18) years. Ways a juvenile becomes involved with our department:

As a Juvenile Offender

A juvenile between the ages of (10-17) years who has allegedly committed a crime.

As a Child in Need of Care

A juvenile between the ages of (birth-17) who is abused, neglected, truant, a runaway, out of parental control, under (10) years of age and has allegedly committed a crime, or is in an environment that may harm him or her.

Juvenile Offender Frequently Asked Questions

Is a juvenile required to have an attorney in court?

Yes. Kansas Law requires that all juveniles appearing in court as respondents/defendants must be represented by an attorney.

In Wyandotte County, a contract attorney is automatically appointed by the court to represent the juvenile (contract attorneys are private practice attorneys who have a contract with the court system to represent juveniles who allegedly committed a crime). The parent always has the option to hire an attorney of their choosing.

Who pays for the court appointed attorney?

The parent and/or juvenile are responsible for the attorney fees. If the family cannot afford to pay for the attorney, an affidavit of indigence may be filled out and given to the judge, who will then determine who will pay or if the fee will be waived.

When and what time is my child's court appearance?

The Clerk’s Office at (913) 573-4190 is required to notify the parents and the juvenile by mail or by personal service when the first hearing will be, whether it is a detention hearing, arraignment or CINC proceeding.

What should I do if I or my child missed a court appearance?

Call the Judge’s Administrative Assistant: (913) 573-8195 to set a time for the juvenile to appear at court. A warrant may have already been issued so it is important to do this as soon as possible before the child is arrested and taken to detention.

Who represents the children in court?

The children’s interests are represented by an attorney called a guardian ad litem, who is appointed by the court.

Who represents the parents in court?

The parents are free to hire an attorney to represent them, or to ask the court to appoint an attorney.

I am a witness. Do I have to appear for court?

You do not need to appear for court unless you receive a subpoena.

What is a subpoena?

A subpoena is a court order requiring you to appear in court on a specific date and time. A subpoena may be mailed to you or personally given to you. If you have been personally served and failed to appear at the designated time and place, the court may find you in contempt and issue a warrant for your arrest.

Do I have a warrant?

By law, our office cannot release that information. Contact the Sheriff’s Office.

How can a child be emancipated?

Parents are obligated to care for their children until they reach the age of (18) years. Emancipation allows a child under (18) to hold property, enter into contracts, and sue or be sued. It does not necessarily relieve a parent of their obligation to provide for the child until the age of (18). To begin the emancipation process, a petition is filed in District Court. The judge, at the hearing, would then determine if the juvenile can enter into contracts and is responsible and mature enough to be treated as an adult. The district attorney’s office does not handle emancipations.

When can a juvenile be tried as an adult?

Any juvenile between the ages of (10 - 17) may be waived to adult status.

The State starts the process by filing a motion requesting adult prosecution in certain limited cases. Factors considered by the district attorney’s office, as well as the court, are the seriousness of the offense, the prior criminal record of the juvenile, the services the juvenile has already received through the court system, and the availability of other services that may rehabilitate the juvenile if he/she remains in the juvenile system.

How can my child’s juvenile record be expunged?

Kansas law allows most juvenile adjudications to be expunged. "Expungement" means that the crime will not be found when a person or agency, other than law enforcement, runs a juvenile record. (2) years after the juvenile is discharged from jurisdiction (i.e., completed his/her sentence), a juvenile may be eligible for expungement.

The juvenile may contact:

Start the process there by completing a petition for expungement. A $50 state fee must be paid.

I am a victim, and the suspect was a juvenile. Who can help me with information, questions, the status of my case and/or help me in filling out the Victim Impact Statement?

When the suspect is a juvenile call (913) 573-2973 for assistance.

Can I find out about the case and know what is happening?

Matters that are in court under the Code for the Care of Children are confidential, but sometimes relatives are allowed to come into court with parents and learn about what is happening with the child. It is unlikely that anyone from the court or attorneys will tell you information over the phone.

How do I get a copy of my police report?

If the suspect is a juvenile, the police cannot release police reports. They, however, will give you a report showing you filed a report which has a complaint number on it. This number helps track your case through the police department and the district attorney’s office.

How do I report child neglect or abuse when I see it?

In the Kansas City metropolitan area, suspected child abuse or neglect can be reported to SRS at (866) 215-9077. Persons who report abuse or neglect that they see cannot be held to be liable for damages in a lawsuit because they reported this to the authorities, should the parents seek to sue.

Child in Need of Care More Information

The Kansas Law relating to children is called the Kansas Code for the Care of Children. Under that law, there are (11) definitions for the court to use in declaring a child to be one who should be under the jurisdiction of the court.

These Include

  • A child who is not receiving adequate parental care, supervision or control, and this is not due entirely because of the family’s financial situation.

  • Children out of the parent’s control, or not in sufficient control to meet their physical, emotional, or mental needs.

  • Children who are being physically, mentally, emotionally, or sexually abused or may be neglected by their parents or caretakers.

  • Children who are placed for adoption or care in violation of the law.

  • Abandoned children.

  • Children who are aged (7 - 18) and are not complying with the school attendance laws.

  • Children under (10) years old who commit a crime.

  • Children who are runaways from home or their court-ordered placement.

  • Children who commit acts which are unlawful for persons under (18) to do, but this does not include:
    • purchase of alcohol or beer
    • purchase of a pari-mutuel ticket at a racetrack
    • purchase of, or possession of tobacco products
    • possession of firearms

  • Children who leave their court-ordered placement twice or more without permission.

  • Children who live in the same home with a sibling who has been abused or neglected.

When can I leave my child home alone?

There is no age set by law.

My child is out of control, whom do I contact?

What do I do if my child continues to run away from home?

You should always make a report to the police when your child leaves home without permission. This is the way that your child’s name gets into the police computer system so that an officer who comes into contact with your child knows what to do.

What happens when a runaway child is picked up by police?

Reported runaway children picked up by police are taken to the Juvenile Intake and Assessment Center (JIAC). This is not the same as the detention center. The child will be interviewed about his/her home, habits, school attendance, etc.

The parent(s) will be contacted to come and pick him/her up from JIAC, which is located at 6th and Tauromee. You can pick your child up or refuse. If you refuse, JIAC staff will make a report to SRS, and an SRS worker will contact you. Call JIAC (913) 621-3523 about the program.

SRS workers are trained to work with families to attempt to keep children out of the state’s custody. They have a service that they can offer called Family Preservation Services. They may also be able to help in other ways. If your child goes into state’s custody (custody of SRS) and continues to run from his/her court-ordered placement repeatedly, then the assistant district attorney assigned to the case may file a request to place your child in a secure place for at least (60) days, where intensive services are provided. This is a locked facility where the child cannot leave.

When can my child legally leave home?

Your child remains in your custody until age (18), until emancipated by court order, or placed in the custody of another person, or the state’s custody, by a court order. Until then, you may place your child in a placement voluntarily if you believe that is in the child’s best interest. For example, children sometimes go to Job Corps placement or to live with relatives or friends with the consent of their parent or guardian.

What happens to children placed in the custody of SRS?

The court will enter orders for the parents to follow, and if the parents change their circumstances and follow court orders, many children are returned to the parents. If parents do not work to complete the court orders and change the circumstances that brought the family to the court’s attention, the court may likely terminate the parents’ rights after finding them unfit. After that, the children can be adopted by relatives or others.

What happens to children placed in the custody of SRS?

This information is under construction.

My minor relative has been placed in foster care, what can I do?

You can contact the juvenile court or SRS and state that you are willing to be a placement for the child. There is a process that must be followed, including that your home, and everyone who resides there, would be checked out by professionals. Children often go into a foster home, but when appropriate relatives are located and checked out, many of them go to live with relatives.

Diversion Programs

If the juvenile is a first-time misdemeanor offender, he or she may be eligible for a diversion program. If the juvenile successfully completes the diversion program, the case is dismissed without a finding of guilt.

The Drug, Theft & Criminal Damage

Operated by the Wyandotte County Court Services department. The length of the program is:

  • (3) Months for the theft, and;
  • (6) Months for the drug & criminal damage

The juvenile and family sign a contract which details the conditions of the diversion.

The contract requires the juvenile to complete:

  • Education classes
  • Remain crime and drug free
  • Obey home and school rules
  • Attend school or an alternative education program,
  • Perform community service hours
  • Pay restitution to the victim if there was a loss
  • Pay court costs ($30) and a supervision fee ($25)

Intermediate Intervention

The Intermediate Intervention Diversion program is operated by Kaw Valley. Juveniles who commit misdemeanor crimes other than theft, criminal damage to property, drug or sex offenses are eligible for this program. It is a 6 month program with a contract and conditions similar to the other three diversion programs. A case manager monitors the juvenile’s compliance with the terms of the diversion contract.

The Intermediate Intervention Diversion program also has a youth court component. A juvenile may be referred by the case manager to youth court. Youth court is held on the first and third Tuesday’s of each month in the evening. Other juveniles act as the prosecutor, defense attorney and the jury. An assistant district attorney presides over the hearing and informs the jury of their duties as jurors. The juvenile has already admitted committing the crime, so guilt or innocence is not determined in youth court. Witnesses testify as to what happened and the prosecutor and defense attorney make recommendations to the jury as to what sentence should be imposed. The jury leaves the court room and deliberates on the sentence. When the jury returns to the courtroom, the jury foreperson informs the court of the recommended constructive sentence which then becomes a part of the juvenile's contract.

Child Abuse/Adult Sexual Assault

Report Child Abuse

Counseling for Victims & Survivors of Sexual Abuse

Domestic Violence

For information regarding a Protection from Abuse or Protection from Stalking order, call the Wyandotte County Civil Clerk’s Office at (913) 573-8190

Counseling Information

Shelter Information