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Georgia and the American Experience

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1 Georgia and the American Experience
Chapter 15: Government of the Empire State Section 3 Judicial Branch ©2005 Clairmont Press

2 Section 3: The Judicial Branch of State Government
ESSENTIAL QUESTION What is the role of the judicial branch in Georgia government?

3 Section 3: The Judicial Branch of State Government
What words do I need to know? felony misdemeanor Supreme Court court of appeals trial courts jurisdiction grand jury trial jury

4 Judicial Branch made up of state’s courts purpose:
interpret state constitution protect legal rights of citizens enforce laws of the state due process of law: courts make sure that everyone is protected from abuse by the government civil cases: disputes between citizens criminal cases: involve violation of laws felony: serious crime with severe punishments allowed misdemeanor: less serious crime with smaller punishments

5 Georgia Courts Supreme Court is state’s highest court
justices elected by popular vote to six-year term Chief Justice is chosen by the other justices appellate: court which reviews cases – no witnesses and juries court of appeals: second highest court trial courts: hears criminal and civil cases examples: magistrate, juvenile, state, superior, probate, municipal (city court) jurisdiction: range of action over which court can rule

6 Jury System a trial by one’s peers
grand jury: determines if enough evidence exists to indict (officially charge) a person trial jury: citizens whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence of a person charged with a crime

7 Separation of Powers each branch of government has its own powers
similar to US Constitution designed so that no branch or person can become too powerful checks and balances system depends on citizens choosing wisely when they vote

8 Section 4: Young People and the Law
ESSENTIAL QUESTION How are young people affected by the law?

9 Section 4: Young People and the Law
What words do I need to know? truancy juvenile

10 Young People and the Law
Over 2,500 children in jail in Georgia juvenile: citizen under the age of 17 truancy: failure to attend school juveniles must follow state’s laws, but violators may be tried by a juvenile court Common crimes: smoking, drinking alcohol, loitering (hanging around a public place without permission), violating curfews, running away

11 Juvenile Court System every county has a juvenile court purposes:
help and protect children ensure protection of children coming under their jurisdiction provide care for children removed from their home delinquent act: act that would be a crime if committed by an adult (example: burglary) status offense: act that would not be a crime if committed by an adult (example: smoking)

12 Steps in Juvenile Justice Process
juvenile “taken into custody” intake: intake officer evaluates case detain or release (to parents) detained juveniles sent to RYDC (regional youth detention center) probable cause hearing before a juvenile court judge dismissal, informal adjustment, or formal hearing if the juvenile committed a serious offense or multiple offenses, a judge has many sentencing options

13 Georgia’s Seven Deadly Sins Act
1994: legislature addressed issue of increasingly violent youth crime juveniles charged with certain crimes (murder, rape, armed robbery with a firearm) could be treated as adults by the courts superior courts handle these cases mandatory 10-year sentences were a part of the new law

14 Rights of Juveniles juveniles have the right to a fair and speedy trial no juries in juvenile cases parents or guardians may be present at hearings attorney must be provided if child’s parents cannot afford one

15 Students’ Rights Under School Law
sometimes students’ rights have been in conflict with schools’ authority courts have ruled that students’ civil rights are in effect at school; however, schools have been given broad power to control and manage the school environment

16 Students Responsibilities Under School Law
students have a legal right to a free public education responsibilities of students: attend school regularly from ages 6-16 follow reasonable rules and regulations work with school officials to prevent disruption and violence which keeps students from learning and achieving

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