Juvenile Justice

The exterior of the Minnehaha County Juvenile Detention Center, pictured on Oct. 21, 2022. (John Hult/South Dakota Searchlight)

Juvenile justice report: More delinquent kids taken to court

BY: - November 1, 2023

South Dakota prosecutors filed more juvenile delinquency petitions in fiscal year 2023 than at any time in nearly a decade, according to an annual report presented Wednesday to a state committee. The report came during the fall meeting of the Juvenile Justice Reinvestment Oversight Council, which is a group of representatives from law enforcement, schools, […]

A sign for the Solem Public Safety Center in Pierre. The center is the home of the South Dakota Department of Corrections administrative offices, as well as the South Dakota Women's Prison. (John Hult/South Dakota Searchlight)

DOC: Abuse allegations by detained children in 2022, 2023 were unfounded

BY: - July 25, 2023

All 11 cases of alleged juvenile abuse and neglect in Department of Corrections facilities and its out-of-state contracted facilities since last June were unsubstantiated, according to a DOC official. DOC Youth Services Director Kristi Bunkers walked through the reports with the Legislature’s Government Operations and Audit Committee on Tuesday in Pierre. The group’s daylong meeting […]

A hallway and secured room doors at the Minnehaha County Juvenile Center in Sioux Falls, as pictured on Oct. 21, 2022.

Juvenile justice reform group reports success, in spite of moves to get tougher on kids

BY: - November 30, 2022

A quick look at the annual report from an oversight council might suggest that the 2015 juvenile justice reform act that created the group has been a smashing success.  The 2015 reforms were meant to keep non-violent offenders out of Department of Corrections (DOC) custody, in the interest of improving outcomes for both kids and […]

State Court Administrator Greg Sattizahn addresses the Study Committee on Juvenile Justice on Thursday, Nov. 3, 2022, at the South Dakota State Capitol. (John Hult/South Dakota Searchlight)

‘Three strikes’ rule for young offenders endorsed by legislative panel

BY: - November 5, 2022

A legislative panel wants to make it easier for judges to detain juveniles, require school resource officers to report suspected drug use to school officials, fund community response teams to deal with low-level offenders and offer a new path to graduation for troubled youth. Those were among the proposals that emerged during the final meeting […]

The exterior of the Minnehaha County Juvenile Detention Center, pictured on Oct. 21, 2022. (John Hult/South Dakota Searchlight)

Minnehaha County mulls $50 million juvenile detention center

BY: - October 25, 2022

SIOUX FALLS – Minnehaha County commissioners may soon ask property owners to foot the bill for a $50 million replacement of the Juvenile Detention Center (JDC) in South Dakota’s largest city. A new Juvenile Justice Center would supplant the 53-year-old JDC with a modern facility twice as large. The project would add 14 beds for […]