Intake Process

Most juveniles enter the juvenile justice system at the Intake level. Juveniles alleged to have committed a criminal offense are required to appear with their parents for an intake conference at the Juvenile Probation Department. Juveniles who have committed a serious crime requiring detention are sent directly to the Youth Center or a shelter facility. The Intake officers decide which cases are referred to Court for a formal Court hearing and which cases can be handled informally.

The decision making process is based on:

  • seriousness of the charge
  • prior police contacts
  • recommendation of the police
  • school adjustment
  • community involvement
  • family situation
  • mental health issues  


For those cases scheduled for Intake Conferences, a notice will be sent to the child and his/her parent's home notifying them of the date and time of the Intake Conference. The notice states that the parent must bring all of the following items with you at the time of the hearing:

  • Social Security cards for both parents and juvenile
  • Payment in the amount of $150.00 for Court Costs
  • Juvenile's birth certificate
  • Juvenile's immunization records 


At the time of the Intake Conference, an Intake Officer may recommend one of four ways to handle a case, depending on the circumstances. A juvenile may be warned and reprimanded and no further action taken; or the case may be held open pending the successful adjustment of the juvenile for six to nine months; or the Intake Officer may recommend that the juvenile be placed on a Consent Decree.

With a Consent Decree, the charges are held open for six to twelve months pending the successfully adjustment of the juvenile. The Deputy Chief Juvenile Probation Officer and the Assistant District Attorney must approve all cases held open. The Judge must approve all Consent Decrees. The juvenile is then formally supervised by a juvenile probation officer.

During an Intake Conference Hearing, the Intake Officer will determine the amount of restitution, community service, counseling, curfew and school attendance, as well as any other terms and conditions the Intake Officer believes to be appropriate.

All parties sign a contract agreeing to the conditions. If all the conditions are met, the charges are never filed with the Juvenile Court. However, if the juvenile violates the contract, the Informal Adjustment, or Consent Decree may be revoked and the juvenile can be referred into Court for a formal Court hearing in front of the Judge.