Juvenile Programs

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The Youth Accountability Program is a pre adjudication Diversion process that employs the use of a Juvenile Justice Coordinator (s) who review the reports submitted by Law Enforcement and determines if the youth is eligible for the program. The Coordinator(s) work with the youth and family through an agreed upon justice contract which have various obligations that need to be completed within a specified time period. When those requirements are completed successful the action is never taken into the court system.

Juvenile Youth Accountability Programs are offered to eligible candidates in both District and County Court areas. These programs are designed with the use of contracts that are established individually for youth that have received either a citation in County Court or a request for juvenile petition in District Court.

All evidence in cases is held a minimum of forty-five days after sentencing. After the forty-five days have passed then evidence may be released. You must call the appropriate law enforcement agency to make arrangements to pick up your property. Early release of property may be possible for medical and work-related emergencies.

Many juvenile cases have restitution in some form as part of the disposition.

    • If a child is placed on diversion, the diversion coordinator forwards the child to the Partner's Restitution Program or forwards restitution paid by the juvenile to the victims.
    • If a child is placed on probation, the probation officer decides the amount of each payment and how often payments are to be paid. If the Child fails to pay, it is the probation officer's responsibility to bring the child back to Court.
    • If a child is committed to the Department of Human Services, Division of Youth Corrections any restitution requirements are monitored by them.
    • If the Child is paroled, the juvenile parole officer is responsible for monitoring restitution.

All restitution for Court (non-diversion) cases is paid in to the Registry of the District Court and distributed to the victims. The District Court Clerk keeps a record of these payments. You may contact the Clerk's office at (970) 257-3625 for the status of any restitution that was ordered to be paid to you. Please have the court case number available.

The District Attorney's Office receives reports regarding juvenile delinquency activity from law enforcement agencies in Mesa County. These reports are reviewed by juvenile justice coordinators and an attorney and a decision is made regarding whether the Child should be summoned to court or diverted away from the Court.

If a diversion is pursued by this office, the parents or legal guardians of the Child will receive a letter setting a date for a diversion conference with one of our juvenile coordinators. If a formal delinquency action is thought to be necessary, the parents along with the child, will receive a summons to appear in court.

If you have already received the Summons to appear in the District Court, please continue reading this message for additional helpful information.

    • On the day of the appearance in Court, you, your child, and any other parent or guardian will need to appear in court to be advised of:
      • your rights,
      • the procedures which will be used,
      • the delinquent act or acts the child has allegedly committed,
      • and the possible penalties for those acts should the child be found guilty or enter a plea of guilty.
    • At this hearing the Judge will also inquire about the Child's desire for counsel, and the parents desire for counsel separate from the Child.
    • If you wish to obtain counsel for yourself and/or your Child before the advisement hearing, you have every right to do so. It is not, however, required that you attend the first hearing with an attorney.
    • For information on the process involved in obtaining court appointed counsel for the indigent, please contact the Public Defender's Office at 245-9122.
    • If you wish to discuss a resolution of your Child's case: Please read the following carefully.
      • Though it is proper for the prosecuting attorney to speak with you and/or the child before the advisement hearing and before you hire counsel, you are under no obligation to do so. If you do hire or obtain counsel for your child, a parent or guardian that is not represented may still speak directly to this office's staff.
      • Once counsel is obtained the party represented by that attorney cannot engage in conversation with our staff unless their attorney is present. It is improper for this office's staff to speak directly to a person represented by an attorney without that attorney's presence.


Failure in any of the diversion programs or the alleged commission of a serious delinquent act, or a prior history of delinquent acts are all factors considered when the decision is made whether to summons a child to appear in a delinquency proceedings. For more detailed information refer to the  
Summons to Appear in Court section.

When a youth receives a ticket for minor in possession of alcohol, marijuana, or drug paraphernalia, they will need to appear in the First Appearance Center in the County Court system with their parent on the required date noted on the ticket. The Juvenile Justice Coordinator then works through the court system to interview eligible youth for the Youth Accountability Program, but the youth is still responsible to the Court during the contract period. If the youth fails to comply with the contract they are remanded back into the court.

Refer to the Restitution, Property Releases, Summons to appear in Court, and Subpoena sections.