Groups push to end routine shackling of juveniles

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — National child advocacy groups are pushing to end the routine shackling of juveniles facing charges in the Louisville court system.

The Courier-Journal ( ) reports the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges released a report recently that criticized the Jefferson County policy to chain every juvenile for each court appearance. The group called for judges to make decisions on a case-by-case basis.

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Under the current policy, all juveniles — regardless of age or offense — have their hands cuffed to a chain around their stomach. Their feet remain free.

The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office opposes any change, saying juveniles pose as much of a danger as adults.

The current policy was put into place in 2011 after an unchained juvenile was able to escape a holding cell.