Monday, November 16, 2015



Trooper Brandon Vitanti, WSP
Presentation: Impaired Driving


Bothell Youth Court
Restorative Justice Circle


Electing New Board Members

Incoming Youth Vice-President
Kira Bloomenthal - Bellevue Youth Court
Incoming Adult Vice-President
Terri Cooper - Cheney Youth Court

Tuesday, June 9, 2015


Bothell Youth Court has created two interesting innovations in the youth court hearing process - the use of expert witnesses and the restorative circle for deliberations. Three officers - two with the fire department and one with the local police department rotate serving as expert witnesses at the youth court hearings. In each case, the prosecutor calls the expert and solicits other situations that the officer is aware of that have had a variety of consequences.

For example, in the case on June 8, Deputy Chief/Fire Marshall Frank Shasky described other instances in which he investigated aggressive driving maneuvers. Having the expert to testify provides a live perspective on the potential consequences of bad driving.

The Youth Court has also adopted a restorative circle, rather than the traditional jury deliberations. The jury comes out of the jury box and sits in a circle with all the advocates, the respondent, and the expert. This is done publicly in court so that the people in the courtroom can observe. Together the circle members explore and decide upon what will be required. The respondent has input into the outcome and has a chance to clarify or correct things.

Thursday, May 28, 2015


The date is set for the 2015 WSAYC (Washington State Association of Youth Courts) Fall Conference. Save the date of Saturday, November 14, 2015, 9:30AM to 3:30PM, at the Seattle University School of Law.
This year’s conference theme focuses on “Choices and consequences” and promises to be exciting, informative and fun-filled with expert guest speakers, live demonstrations and lots of swag, including tickets to local Seattle attractions!
You don’t want to miss this so watch for future emails, flyer and registration information! I look forward to seeing you all at the conference!
Kelley R Gradwohl
WSAYC President

Thursday, May 7, 2015


According to the National Youth Court Database, in 1994 there were only 78 youth court programs in operation; as of March, 2010, there were over 1,050 youth court programs in operation in 49 states and the District of Columbia.
Conflicting accounts in the literature create challenges to tracing the exact beginnings of youth court programs. One of the earliest known programs still in operation is the Naperville Youth  Jury in Naperville, Illinois. Naperville’s program started in June of 1972. There are also anecdotal reports of a youth court that began operating in Horseheads, NY in 1968.

Friday, February 20, 2015


Washington State Youth Court Association’s Board of Directors member (Secretary/Treasurer) Susan Gregory (Goettsch) has recently been asked to be part of a 14 person committee providing review and input regarding the findings of a study on Youth Courts. 
Global Youth Justice was awarded a new U.S. Department of Justice School Safety 4-year $1.83 million Research Grant with two partners - WestEd and Analytica.  In response to continued School Violence, Congress and the President approved $75 Million for School Safety Research for the first time in 2014, and these funds were competitively awarded by USDOJ's National Institute of Justice (NIJ) to Global Youth Justice.   Susan’s work with the committee will start sometime in the spring of 2015.

Thursday, January 15, 2015


Kaylee Ditlefsen joined teen court this year and has started out strong.  She has engaged in all training opportunities afforded and has volunteered to be prosecutor, defense and judge for the court.  Clallam County Teen Court is very excited to see that Kaylee was selected as Soroptimist’s Girl of the Month of November, 2014.  We know that she will make her dream come true of heading to law school and becoming a prosecutor.  We are truly excited to see what the future holds for Kaylee.
-Submitted by Tracey Lassus - Deputy Prosecutor

Monday, December 22, 2014

National Association of Youth Courts

The National Association of Youth Courts, Inc., a 501 (c)(3) membership organization, serves as a central point of contact for youth court programs across the nation, providing informational services, delivering training and
technical assistance, and developing resource materials on how to develop and enhance youth court programs in the United States.
We are dedicated to providing leadership for a restorative justice model of early intervention so that young people have access to services without formal processing in traditional juvenile justice systems.
Planning for the creation of NAYC began in 2005 with the specific purpose of establishing a private not-for-profit organization to represent and serve local, state and national youth court, teen court, peer court and student court efforts since this local grass-roots movement began a quarter of a century ago.
The official founding of the National Association of Youth Courts, Inc., in 2007, was supported by the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools and Administration for Children, Youth and Families and the Corporation for National and Community Service.