The Intake Section functions to screen, counsel and divert the less serious offenders
from the court process. In the cases of habitual or serious offenders, the offense
reports are referred to the District Attorney for screening and formal court processing.
Intake is charged with processing delinquent charges and Families In Need of Services
referrals. Most juveniles are referred by the City Police or the
Sheriff's Department, Child Welfare & Attendance Department of the East Baton Rouge
Parish School Board and parents (self referrals).
Intake officers conduct interviews with juveniles and their parents, decide if the
matter is within the Court's jurisdiction, assess the seriousness of the offense, as well
as the family's coping abilities, authorize detaining a child when necessary, and decide
whether to (refer the matter to the District Attorney) file petition (legal document
citing alleged unlawful behavior on behalf of the juvenile.)
Petitions are filed when it is felt further Court action is necessary. A case is
officially made and the matter is transferred to the Casework Section where a Probation
officer is assigned to offer intensive, follow-up services.
Arrested juveniles, who are referred and seen by Intake are ordinarily not detained,
unless the number and/or seriousness of the offenses preclude this possibility.
Families are advised of their legal Miranda Rights and this advisement is continued in
every stage of the juvenile court system. Families are also referred to other
community agencies that can more competently offer specialized services.