Minnesota Law Review

Note, Juveniles Locked in Limbo: Why Pretrial Detention Implicates a Fundamental Right

At the birth of the juvenile court, reformers attempted to develop a system that melded child welfare concerns with crime control. Despite the founders’ original intentions, however, the juvenile court system has moved away from the therapeutic model to a punitive model.  The increasingly punitive nature of the system warrants a second look at the due process safeguards courts afford—or do not afford—juveniles.  The Kansas Supreme Court recently held, based on the increasingly punitive nature of the juvenile justice system, that juveniles should have a constitutional right to a jury trial. This decision analogously provides support for the argument that juveniles deserve more due process safeguards at the point of pretrial detention.

The Note argues that courts should recognize that the ability to contest pretrial detention is a fundamental right, protected by the Due Process Clause of the Constitution. The Note critiques the reasoning behind Schall v. Martin, the decision that failed to recognize that the pretrial detention of juveniles implicates a fundamental right. It examines the language of current state statutes permitting the pretrial detention of juveniles. The author advocates that in light of the increasingly punitive nature of the system, all juveniles should be afforded greater procedural safeguards including the right to contest pretrial detention. The Supreme Court should grant the same procedural safeguards that adults enjoy to juvenile offenders.  The recognition that physically detaining juveniles implicates a fundamental right will lead to the creation of national guidelines and criteria for detainment.  Stricter guidelines will reduce the number of juveniles in pretrial detention.  This will alleviate the burden on state resources and foster the development of diversionary programs. These measures will help the juvenile justice system return to its rehabilitative underpinnings.


:: View PDF

News & Events

  • Welcome

    For nearly one hundred years, the Minnesota Law Review has been a leader amongst academic legal publications. When Professor Henry J. Fletcher launched the journal in 1917, his goal was simple. It was to “contribute a little something to the systematic growth of the whole law.” Since then, the Law [...]

  • Minnesota Law Review Alum Remembered 45 Years After Death

    Minnesota Law Review alumnus Tom Cranna was honored at the Annual Banquet this Spring, 45 years after his death. Mr. Cranna was remembered for his contributions to the journal, the school, and the positive impact he had on his family and friends. The Devil’s Lake Journal published a memorial which [...]

  • Follow MLR on Twitter!

    The Minnesota Law Review is proud to announce that we are now on Twitter. Follow us @MinnesotaLawRev for information and updates concerning the petition period and deadlines, the opening and closing of article submissions, our 2014 Symposium: Offenders in the Community, and all other news concerning our authors and publications. [...]

  • Vol. 97 Lead Piece Cited in Al Jazeera Opinion Piece

    A recent Al Jazeera opinion piece that criticizes the Supreme Court’s Daimler decision cites to Volume 97′s lead piece, How Business Fares in the Supreme Court. You can read the Al Jazeera piece here. Share this: on Twitter on Facebook on Google+

  • Masthead for Volume 99 Board

    The masthead for the Board of Volume 99 of the Minnesota Law Review is now available. You can view the masthead here. Share this: on Twitter on Facebook on Google+


cforms contact form by delicious:days