A person between the ages of 12 and 15 who commits an act that would be considered a crime if he/she was an adult, may be issued a Juvenile Delinquent Appearance Ticket. Such a ticket may also be issued to an individual who is 16 or 17 years old for acts which would be misdemeanor, or less serious, crimes. Any youth receiving such a ticket will meet with a probation officer in the company of their parent/guardian. After the meeting, the matter will be considered for diversion services (which avoids Family Court involvement) or will be referred to the Madison County Attorney's Office for potential court action.
A person who is 16 or 17 years old who commits a more serious act, which would be a felony if he/she were an adult, would be required to appear in the Youth Part of Madison County Court where a judge will decide how to proceed. Younger individuals who commit very serious acts, such as murder, may also be required to appear in Youth Part.