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Court Structure, Defense Attorney Use, and Juvenile Court Decisions

David P. Aday, Jr.
The Sociological Quarterly
Vol. 27, No. 1 (Spring, 1986), pp. 107-119
Published by: Wiley on behalf of the Midwest Sociological Society
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4106168
Page Count: 13
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Court Structure, Defense Attorney Use, and Juvenile Court Decisions
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Abstract

A typology of metropolitan juvenile courts suggests important variations in court structure and procedure. Data describing case characteristics and disposition decisions were drawn from two courts selected to represent "types" ("traditional" and "due process") that are different in structure and procedure. Analyses reveal important differences in the uses of defense attorneys, in case outcomes, and in the variables that influence case decisions. Defense attorney use is more consequential and case decision making is more patterned and regular in the "due process" type court. The study suggests an explanation for contradictions of previous research on the determinants of juvenile court decisions and an interpretation for confusing findings on the consequences of using defense attorneys injuvenile court proceedings.

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