“The other kids were completely different from me. They were like wild animals. Literally like they would be banging on the doors for no reason at 3 in the morning. I'm just like, ‘Why are they doing all this?’”

Jeremy's Story

Jeremy is a 16 year-old who lives with his grandmother and uncle in Jackson, MS. One evening, when he returned home late from school, Jeremy got into an argument with his family members that became physical. His friends heard what has happening and called the police, who came to the house and arrested Jeremy for domestic violence. Because it was his first arrest, he was unfamiliar with the system, and he had no parent or guardian with him when the intake counselor (who is a representative of youth court) questioned him. He appeared in court for two hearings, but he never spoke with a defense attorney. He was detained at the juvenile center for one week before he was released.

Read full interview transcript.