Juvenile Field Services

Juvenile Field Services

The Juvenile Field Services Division places a strong emphasis on the principles of risk-need-responsivity in response to juvenile crime and delinquency. From the first point of entry into the juvenile justice system, efforts to divert youth from the system and preserve the family are a priority. A continuum of intermediate sanctions for youth under Probation's supervision mitigates the need for formal court proceedings and is designed to assist youth in redirecting negative behaviors and successfully completing probation. Targeted strategies place emphasis on prevention and early intervention, child and family focus and teaming, a cross-systems approach to programs and service delivery, collaboration and trauma-informed care.

Juvenile Intake Services

All youth who are arrested by law enforcement agencies are referred to the Probation Department, either by the issuing of a citation or by booking into the Juvenile Facility. A Deputy Probation Officer will assess whether youth’s referral regarding the arrest/citation for a suspected law violation should be disposed by counseling and releasing the youth, referring the youth and/or family to a community counseling agency, placing the youth on informal probation or referring to the District Attorney to request a petition be filed with the court.

Juvenile Investigation Services

When the District Attorney has filed a petition with the Court and the Court has found the youth to be responsible for committing a violation of the law, a Deputy Probation Officer is assigned to investigate the circumstances of the case. The Probation Officer's investigation consists of a thorough review of all available information, interviews with concerned parties, careful evaluation of all relevant circumstances, assessment of risk for future delinquency, responsivity factors, family dynamics, peer relationships, academic history, and the youth’s prior and current activities in the community.

Recommendations in Juvenile Court range from release to parents, commitment to the Juvenile Facility, removal from parental custody for placement in foster care, or a commitment to the Secure Youth Treatment Facility.  Juvenile recommendations generally include a grant of probation or informal handling with a case plan focused on rehabilitation.

Juvenile Community Supervision

Juvenile Community Supervision caseloads are determined by a validated risk/needs assessment. Youth under supervision are generally between the ages of 12-18 and in some cases up to age 25. Deputy Probation Officers assigned to caseloads are trained in administering validated risk/needs assessment tools, creating comprehensive case plans, utilizing Motivational Interviewing and facilitating cognitive behavioral interventions.

Youth assigned to Juvenile Community Supervision have access to and are often referred to a wide variety of no-cost programs and services aimed at targeted interventions that provide positive reinforcements to limit and/or eliminate contact with the justice system altogether. Deputy Probation Officers are also trained to recognize and identify signs of trauma and sexual exploitation, and to connect youth to appropriate levels of service based on need.

Furthermore, as required by statue, Deputy Probation Officers are an extension of the court and thus monitor compliance with court-ordered probation conditions, by working with the youth in a variety of supports and roles, such as, counselor, advocate, and/or mentor.