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Juvenile Hearing Board

Per the Tiverton Town Charter, Chapter 72:

Sec. 72-1. Establishment.

Pursuant to chapter 45-2 of the Rhode Island General Laws, a juvenile hearing board shall be established in the Town of Tiverton for the purpose of hearing all cases referred to it by the juvenile division of the Tiverton Police Department or the chief of police of the town or his/her designee, with respect to persons under the age of 18 who are charged with violating the criminal laws of the state or the town.

Said board shall be called the Tiverton Juvenile Hearing Board.

Sec. 72-2. Membership.

(a) The membership of the town juvenile hearing board (the board) shall consist of five members who shall be qualified electors of the town. In addition, there may be two additional auxiliary members who serve as active members at the request of the chairperson of the board in the event any regular member or members are unable to serve at any hearing or proceeding.

(b) The members shall be appointed by a majority vote of the town council of the Town of Tiverton.

(c) The term of appointment shall be for three years except that the initial appointments may be for a term of less than three years in order to stagger the appointments.

(d) Appointed members of the board shall be eligible to be reappointed, and upon expiration of their term shall continue to serve until another be appointed in their place or until reappointed

Sec. 72-3. Referral to juvenile hearing board.

(a) Persons who are under the age of 18 years may be referred to the board, which shall have concurrent jurisdiction with the Rhode Island Family Court, if the alleged act would support a finding of waywardness or delinquency in the family court, including but not limited to violation of compulsory school attendance laws or if such act constitutes an offense which, if committed by an adult, would be a misdemeanor, provided however, that no referral shall be made in the case of any person:

(1) Who shall have been twice previously referred to the board; or

(2) Who shall have once previously referred to the board and refused or failed to abide by the sanctions imposed or to have made the restitutions recommended; or

(3) Shall at the time of the commission of the offense within the custody and control of the Rhode Island Family Court, with the exception of guardianship proceedings.

(b) The juvenile division of the police department, the chief of police or his designee may order the referral to the board of any other juvenile offender where in the opinion of the juvenile division or the chief of police or his designee such referral would be beneficial to the juvenile concerned or the community at large.

(c) No referral to the board shall be made until such person, together with his/her legal guardian or legal representative shall have, in writing, waived such person's right to an initial hearing in the family court with respect to the offense charged, has admitted to the offense and has agreed to abide by the decision of the board.

Sec. 72-4. Duties of the board.

(a) The board shall be authorized to hear all cases referred to it by the juvenile division of the town police department, the chief of police of the town police department, or his/her designee and to impose and order sanctions other than incarceration.

Sanctions may include but are not limited to:

(1) Fines up to a maximum of $100.00 for each offense;

(2) Community service;

(3) Restitution for any injuries or property damage, where appropriate, resulting from the commission of the offense;

(4) Imposition of reasonable curfew;

(5) Denial, suspension or revocation of driving privileges for a period of up to two years;

(6) Appropriate counseling.

In any such proceedings the board shall, prior to the imposition of any sanctions, request the juvenile offender and his/her parents, legal guardian and legal representative to agree to the sanctions imposed, the amount of restitution ordered and the manner of making the same. In ordering restitution the board shall consider the juvenile offender's ability to pay and the amount of actual damages caused as a result of the commission of the offenses.

Sec. 72-5. Quorum - Rules.

(a) A majority of the board's membership shall constitute a quorum, and a majority of the members shall be required to take any action. Any juvenile offender may be represented by counsel and may present evidence in his/her behalf.

(b) The board shall have the power from time to time to adopt and publish all rules and regulations necessary to carry out its function under the provisions of this chapter.

(c) The board shall give notice of the date and time of meeting to the juvenile division of the police department or the chief of police, and the alleged juvenile offender and his/her parents or legal guardians, not less than seven days prior to the date of the hearing.

(d) Board proceedings shall be closed to the public, and the provisions of chapter 42-46 of the Rhode Island General Laws shall not apply to such proceedings. All records or proceedings, including records concerning the arrest, apprehension or detention of any juvenile offender, shall be withheld from public inspection but such records shall be available to the parent, legal guardians or attorney of the juvenile for inspection.

(Ord. of 10-14-08)


Members of the Juvenile Hearing Board:

Rene G. Brown, Esq.
Eugene Raposa
Patrick Meyers
Constance Fleckenstein
Richard Bush
Amanda M. Souza - Alternate