Chapter 4.5.3 Voluntary Return of Out-of-State Juveniles

Voluntary Return of Out-of-State Juveniles

Second, an out-of-state juvenile may be voluntarily returned under ICJ Rule 6-102.  This rule applies to non-delinquent juveniles, probation and parole absconders, escapees, and accused delinquents.  The holding state’s ICJ Office shall be advised of the juvenile’s detention and shall contact the juvenile’s home/demanding state’s ICJ Office concerning the case. The home/demanding state’s ICJ office is required to immediately initiate measures to determine the juvenile’s residency and jurisdictional facts in that state.  Juveniles are to be returned only after charges are resolved when pending charges exist in the holding/receiving state, unless consent is given by the holding/receiving and demanding/sending states’ courts and ICJ Offices. See ICJ Rules 7-103(1) (Interstate Comm’n for Juveniles 2020). At a court hearing, whether physical or by telephonic or other electronic means, the court in the holding state is required to inform the juvenile of his/her compact rights and may elect to appoint counsel or a guardian ad litem to represent the juvenile in this process.  See id. 6-102(3)-(5).  If in agreement, the juvenile signs the approved ICJ Form III Consent for Voluntary Return of Out-of-State Juvenile, consenting to the return, which is required to be filed with the compact office in the holding state. Juveniles are required to be returned by the home/demanding state within five (5) business days of receiving ICJ Form III Consent for Voluntary Return of Out-of-State Juvenile, this period may be extended up to an additional five (5) working days with approval from both ICJ Offices.  The compact rules require the home/demanding state to be responsive to the holding state’s court orders in returning its juveniles. Each ICJ Office is required to have pre-existing policies and procedures that govern the return of juveniles to ensure the safety of the public and juveniles. See id. 6-102(6)-(9).

In addition to being responsible for the juvenile’s return within five business days on notice that the ICJ Form III Consent for Voluntary Return of Out-of-State Juvenile has been signed, the home/demanding state is responsible for the costs of transportation and for making transportation arrangements.  See id. 7-101.  Further, to reinforce ICJ Rule 6-102 (6)-(9), 7-102 designates that the home state’s ICJ Office shall determine appropriate measures and arrangements to ensure the safety of the public and of juveniles being transported based on the holding and home states’ assessments of the juvenile. If the home state’s ICJ Office determines that a juvenile is considered a risk to harm him/herself or others, the juvenile shall be accompanied on the return to the home/demanding state.

When the juvenile is a non-delinquent being held in secure detention past the initial 24 hours, pending return to the home/demanding state, Section 3.2 of the 2007 OJJDP Guidance Manual for Monitoring Facilities Under the JJDP Act of 2002 provides that “Out-of-state runaways securely held beyond 24 hours solely for the purpose of being returned to proper custody in another state in response to a warrant or request from a jurisdiction in the other state or pursuant to a court order must be reported as violations of the DSO requirement. Juveniles held pursuant to the Interstate Compact for Juveniles enacted by the state are excluded from the DSO requirements in total.”  While this language was rescinded in 2018 (See http://www.njjn.org/article/federal-update---august-2018),  there is a newer guidance document from OJJDP which can be found at (https://ojjdp.ojp.gov/sites/g/files/xyckuh176/files/media/document/Compliance-Monitoring-TA-Tool.pdf , See page 11.   While the terms of the ICJ exception remains the same in both the former and present version of the guidance document, regardless of which guidance document is in effect, it is the federal statute which controls and will also keep us from getting confused.  The DSO requirement which provides that status offenders may be held in accordance with ICJ as the states have enacted it is specifically referenced in the federal statute at 34 U.S.C § 11133(a)(11)(A)(iii).