Kathy Szeliga and Ryan Nawrocki

Recent changes to Maryland’s juvenile justice system have eroded any meaningful legal consequences for young offenders, even violent and dangerous ones, offering instead impunity or undue leniency for their crimes.

One of these rules allows unelected officials at the Department of Juvenile Services — not judges, prosecutors, or police — to arbitrarily drop all charges before they get to court. This matters because Governor Wes Moore appointed Vincent Schiraldi to lead that department. Secretary Schiraldi has indicated clearly that he hopes to shutter most youth correctional facilities.

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