Custody (Juvenile) Law and Legal Definition

The term “arrest” is not used in reference to juveniles. Law enforcement can take a youth into custody. Three types of custody are:

Temporary Custody – Police can take a juvenile into temporary custody for 12 hours without an order from a judge unless it is a Saturday, Sunday or holiday. Then a juvenile may be held for 24 hours without a court order. Law enforcement must notify parents, guardians or custodians that the juvenile has been taken into custody and tell them they have the right to be present with the juvenile until the court order is in place.

Non-secure Custody – The court decides whether to place a juvenile in secure custody or non-secure custody. If non-secure custody is requested, the court will consider releasing the juvenile to a parent, guardian, custodian or other adult.

Secure Custody – The court must believe the juvenile committed the offense in the petition and also one of the following conditions must be met:

The juvenile is charged with a felony and is a danger to property or persons;

The juvenile is charged with a misdemeanor that includes assault on a person and is a danger to persons;

The juvenile failed to come to court on a pending delinquency charge;

The court believes the juvenile will not come to court on a pending charge;

The juvenile has run away from a training school or detention center;

The court believes the juvenile has or will harm himself/herself;

The juvenile is undisciplined by being a runaway and may need secure custody.