Juvenile Court: The Legal Process as a Rehabilitative Tool

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Washington Law Review, Vol: 51, Issue: 3, Page: 697

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Ellis, Bobbe Jean
Juvenile Law; Law Enforcement and Corrections
commentary description
The author's study, reported in this comment, had two objectives. First, it attempted to determine whether a juvenile's experience with the traditional sociological model or with the legal due process model is more likely to motivate him to feel positively toward the legal system. Second, this study attempted to measure the attitudes of the professionals in the juvenile system (judges, attorneys, and caseworkers) toward the two models. The results of the study, although not all were statistically significant, indicated that although the professionals favored the traditional sociological model, the use of the legal-due process model was more likely to result in the offender's feeling that the legal system was fair. If, as a result of these positive feelings toward the legal system, the offender is more likely to become rehabilitated because of his perception of the legitimacy of the rule of law, then the legal due process model possesses more promise as a rehabilitative device than does the traditional sociological model.