New Juvenile Justice Clinic

By: Meghan Dwyer
By: Meghan Dwyer

ROCKFORD (WIFR) -- As 23 News reported last month overcrowding in the juvenile justice center is still a concern. While there are fewer teens in the justice center, many are staying longer than normal. That's because of a backlog in the court system. But now law students from Northern Illinois University are taking on juvenile cases.

A juvenile justice clinic is now being run out of the Zeke Giorgi Legal Clinic. It started this Fall in an effort to help juveniles who have gotten into trouble at school and in the courts. Six students are handling cases so far and while they aren't yet making a dent in the backlog. They hope more students will eventually join the effort.

Nearly 350 cases are filed in Winnebago County's delinquency court each year. The public defender's office has only two attorneys at most working there at a given time.

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