In the YWCA Teen Court Program, juvenile first time offenders are given a chance to turn their lives around and avoid a future criminal record. The program conducts court every other week for approximately ten months per year at the Forsyth County Courthouse and is designed to lessen the load on the juvenile court system, give practical legal experience to students who are interested in law and help young offenders get back on the right track.
Youth volunteers from Forsyth County Schools devote their time and effort to help the Teen Court Program accomplish it's goals by serving as attorneys, bailiffs, and clerks of court. Youth first time offenders are referred to the program by the arresting officer or school resource officer. They are chosen to have the opportunity to participate in the program based on the nature of the crime committed and the circumstances surrounding it. In each case, guilt has been admitted by the defendant who has agreed to abide by the sentence of the teen court jury. Sentences can include activities such as: community service hours, skills and education seminars, tutoring, jury duty session at other teen court proceedings, a letter of apology to injured parties, personal apologies and jail tours. the jury determines an appropriate and constructive sentence based on the facts in each case.
Teen Court would not exist without many dedicated volunteers. Law students from the Wake Forest School of Law also volunteer their time to help with this program. If you are interested in volunteering your time please contact Kent Tyson at 336-722-0597.