HCS/SB 793 - This act modifies provisions relating to juvenile court proceedings, sex trafficking, and judicial positions.
JUVENILE COURT ELIGIBILITY (Sections 211.021, 211.031, 211.032, 211.033, 211.041, 211.061, 211.071, 211.073, 211.081, 211.091, 211.101, 211.161, 211.181, 211.321, 211.421, 211.425, 211.431, 211.435, 221.044, 488.315, 558.003)
Under current law, children who are 17 years of age are prosecuted for criminal offenses in courts of general jurisdiction. This act provides that, unless the child is certified as an adult or is being prosecuted for a traffic or curfew violation, children who are 17 years of age must be prosecuted in the juvenile court system. The expanded service of the juvenile court system shall not be effective until sufficient funds are appropriated.
This act repeals a provision of current law making certain amendments to definitions relating to juvenile courts effective upon appropriations by the General Assembly for juvenile officers.
Under current law, children between the ages of 12 and 17 who are alleged to have committed certain offenses can be prosecuted in a court of general jurisdiction rather than in juvenile court. Under this act, this age range is changed to a range between 12 and 18 years.
Current law allows offenders who are under 17 and a half years of age and have been certified as adults to be eligible for dual jurisdiction of both the juvenile and adult criminal codes. Dual jurisdiction allows an offender who has been found guilty in an adult court to complete a juvenile sentence in a Division of Youth Services facility. This act provides that offenders under the age of 18 are eligible for the program.
Under this act, no person under the age of 18 may be detained in an adult jail, unless the person has been certified as an adult.
This act creates the "Juvenile Justice Preservation Fund" as well as a surcharge of $3.50 to be assessed on all civil actions filed in Missouri, a surcharge of $2.00 on all traffic violations of any county ordinance or any violation of state traffic laws, as well as a fine of up to $500, issued at a prosecutor's discretion, against offenders convicted of an offense against a child. The proceeds from such surcharges and fines shall be payable to the Fund and used for the administration of the juvenile justice system. The Fund will sunset on August 28, 2024.
These provisions have an effective date of January 1, 2021.
These provisions are substantially similar to the truly agreed and finally passed HCS/SB 800 (2018), and similar to HCS/HB 1255 (2018), HB 2301 (2018), HCS/SB 693 (2018), SB 40 (2017), HB 274 (2017), SB 685 (2016), HB 1812 (2016), SB 213 (2015), and HB 300 (2015).
CIRCUIT JUDGES (Sections 478.375, 478.625)
The act provides that Cole County shall have two associate circuit judges, with the second associate judge also being elected in 2020.
The act repeals a provision authorizing a new circuit judicial position in the Sixth Judicial Circuit when a new jail is constructed.
This provision is identical to a provision of HCS/SB 871 (2018) and identical to HCS/HB 2410 (2018) and similar to HB 2203 (2018).
SEX TRAFFICKING (Sections 567.020, 567.030, 567.050, 567.060, 589.400, 610.131)
This act provides that being under the age of 18 and acting under the coercion of an agent is an affirmative defense to the prosecution of the offense of prostitution.
This act raises the offense of patronizing prostitution from a Class A misdemeanor to a Class E felony when the individual who the offender patronizes is less than 18 but more than 14 years of age, and from a Class E felony to a class D felony when the individual who the offender patronizes is 14 years of age or younger. Any person convicted of patronizing a prostitute, when the person patronized is under the age of 18, shall register as a sex offender.
The act raises the penalty for promoting prostitution in the first degree of a person under the age of sixteen from a Class B felony to a Class B felony punishable by a term of imprisonment no less than 10 years, and raises the penalty for promoting prostitution of a person of age 16 or age 17 to the offense of second degree prostitution, a class D felony.
This act creates a process to expunge the criminal records of persons who have pled guilty to, or been convicted of, the offense of prostitution while under the coercion of an agent. Upon the determination of the court that the person was acting under the coercion of an agent when he or she committed the offense of prostitution, the person's criminal record relating to the offense of prostitution shall be expunged.
These provisions are similar to HB 1526 (2018) and HB 1628 (2018).