A proposed court ruling that would make it state law for minors 17 and under to be charged as minors even in felony cases has been proposed, according to a recent report. Illinois state law currently deals with juvenile crime somewhat more seriously, charging 17-year-old offenders as adults in the case of felony crimes. However, many individuals see this law as unfair and are working to change it.
Activists in favor of the change argue that 17-year-old offenders are still effectively children, especially in the eyes of the laws that keep them from voting or signing up for credit cards before the age of 18. They maintain that youths of that age lack the ability to make sound decisions and therefore should not be penalized with a permanent criminal record for making an unwise choice before the age of majority. Some officials argue that a 17-year-old is more capable of change and growth than an adult criminal, and the Juvenile Court is set up to promote such growth in young offenders.