K.A., Appellant-Respondent, vs. STATE OF INDIANA, Appellee-Petitioner.
COURT OF APPEALS OF INDIANA, SECOND DISTRICT
775 N.E.2d 382; 2002 Ind. App. LEXIS 1548
September 20, 2002, Filed
K.A., while a high school student was suspended. She was charged with criminal offenses arising out of her violation of that suspension. She was placed on probation at a treatment center and admitted violating her probation.
Under Ind. Code § 31-10-2-1(10) (11) and § 31-37-18-6, did the juvenile court abuse its discretion in ordering K.A. committed to the Department of Correction for placement in the Indiana Girls School when a less severe disposition, placement in a foster home, was available? Did the juvenile court properly indicate its reasons for placing K.A. in the Girls School?
Ind. Code § 31-10-2-1(10) provides that it is the policy of Indiana to provide a judicial procedure that recognizes and enforces the accountability of children and parents.
Ind. Code § 31-10-2-1(11) provides that the state's policy is to promote public safety and individual accountability by the imposition of appropriate sanctions.
Ind. Code § 31-37-18-6 requires the juvenile court to select the least restrictive placement in most situations. However, the statute contains language which reveals that under certain circumstances a more restrictive placement might be appropriate. That is, the statute requires placement in the least restrictive setting only if that is consistent with the safety of the community and the best interest of the child. Thus, the statute recognizes that in certain situations the best interest of the child is better served by a more restrictive placement. While the juvenile code creates a presumption in favor of disposing of juvenile matters using the least severe disposition available to the court which will serve the needs of the case, the code explicitly recognizes that in some instances commitment may be in the best...