Showing posts from February, 2013


February 26, 2013
During the 2001-2002 school year, the Thurston County Youth Court Program was developed in cooperation with the River Ridge High School, North Thurston Public Schools, Thurston County Prosecutor's Office, YMCA, Washington State Bar Association, Community Youth Services, Thurston County Juvenile/Court Probation and the Superior Court Judges and Court Commissioners for Thurston County.  In 2004, the program expanded to include truancy violations from schools and juvenile court.  For many years, the program was directed by Thurston County Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Rick Peters.  In 2011, the Youth Court Program did not hold meetings or hearings for the first time since the 2001-2002 school year. 
The Thurston County Prosecuting Attorney's Office has been working to revive our Youth Court Program and is actively recruiting students from our local high schools.  A training for students is set for Saturday, March 2, 2013, and Senior Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Rick…


Read here about Kitsap's youth court program.


Published: Thursday, January 31, 2013, 12:01 a.m. Court of their peers serves justice for young drivers By Diana Hefley, Herald Writer

BOTHELL -- Bothell Municipal Court Judge Michelle Gehlsen isn't convinced the few minutes she spends with new drivers facing their first traffic ticket is enough time to hammer home the dangers of speeding or texting behind the wheel.

Teenagers may need a little more encouragement to think about their responsibilities, even if the lecture is coming from someone in a black robe.

Gehlsen has helped the city launch a new youth court with the goal of cutting down on the number of repeat traffic offenders and maybe saving lives. Traffic accidents remain the No. 1 killer of young people, Gehlsen said.

The youth court is open to 16- and 17-year-old first-time traffic offenders. To opt into the court, offenders must admit their guilt. Yet they are given the chance to explain the circumstances in a triallike setting. The court is led by high school students, …

Coordinator Joe Jackson reports that their youth court student training will be held March 2, 2013.  Former Washington State Association of Youth Courts President Rick Peters will be lending a hand to train the students.