Juvenile Justice System in West Virginia Examined - Beckley, Bluefield & Lewisburg News, Weather, Sports

Juvenile Justice System in West Virginia Examined

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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) -

West Virginia's juvenile justice system will be examined by a court-hired monitor due to concerns that it focuses more on punishment than rehabilitation.
    
The state Supreme Court has tapped former Division of Juvenile Services director Cindy Largent-Hill for the job. She will report her findings to the court.
    
Largent-Hill tells the Charleston Daily Mail that she wants to help change the system, and not police it.
    
She said most youths entering the system were abuse victims or have drug problems, but treatment opportunities sometimes are overshadowed by a focus on punishment.
    
Current Juvenile Services director Denny Dodson said there have been improvements in helping youths re-enter society. However, he said the system could do a better job.