Department of Juvenile Justice

young man under arrest
Chris Yarzab via Flickr

The number of juvenile arrests in Northeast Florida has dropped by more than a quarter over the past five years.  A new report from the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice shows the lowest number of juvenile arrests in 40 years, statewide.

Duval Academy sign
Duval County Schools

After years of controversy, the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice is ending its relationship with Youth Services International, a for-profit firm with state contracts totaling roughly $90 million to run seven juvenile lockups.

A House panel on Wednesday unanimously approved a bill aimed at keeping Floridians with mental illnesses out of the criminal-justice system.

The House Children, Families & Seniors Subcommittee supported the measure (HB 439), filed by Rep. Charles McBurney, R-Jacksonville, that would create a statewide framework for counties to offer treatment-based mental health courts.

Many counties have mental-health courts, but they have varying eligibility and program requirements.

Duval Academy building
Youth Services International

Jacksonville police are looking for six juvenile offenders who escaped from a Westside detention program over the weekend. A seventh teenager was caught today and charged with escape.

Steven Depolo / Flickr

The Jacksonville-based Delores Barr Weaver Policy Center is working with the state's Department of Juvenile Justice to prevent Florida girls from falling into the juvenile justice system.

WFSU’s Sascha Cordner sat down with outgoing Florida Department of Juvenile Justice Secretary Wansley Walters, who will be retiring in a month from her role, as first reported by the News Service of Florida. As the agency’s first female head, she’s also one of the longest serving agency heads under Governor Rick Scott. She’s been responsible for a number of innovations, including a civil citation program that has helped reduce the overall juvenile crime-rate.

Hear Part 1 of our conversation below. Stay tuned to next week's Capital Report to hear Part 2.

Rhema Thompson / WJCT

It was supposed to be a meeting between the State Attorney Angela Corey and members of the Jacksonville Clergy to address the county’s civil citation track record. But it didn’t last for long.

Duval Schools Expand ICARE Program To Keep Kids Out Of The System

Nov 9, 2013
Wikimedia Commons

The Interfaith Coalition for Action, Reconciliation and Empowerment (ICARE) has joined the effort to stop the criminalization of first-time juvenile offenders in Jacksonville.

University of North Florida

African-American children make up less than 40% of the total juvenile population in Jacksonville, but data from the Department of Juvenile Justice shows that 2/3 of all kids arrested in Duval County are black.


Michael Hallett, is Professor & Chairman of the Department of Criminology & Criminal Justice at the University of North Florida. He said he's also concerned that a large number of kids' first arrest is for a violent crime.