Baton Rouge judge sees more juveniles involved in violent crimes

Local News

BATON ROUGE, La. (BRPROUD) — Judge Adam Haney says in his five years as a judge he has never seen young people getting more involved in violent crimes. There is a lot behind why crime is increasing, but he says the issue starts at home.

On Friday afternoon a teenage argument turned deadly. According to the East Baton Rouge Sheriff’s Office, a mother, her adult son and her teenage daughter came to a house on Avocado Drive to fight one of the residents. Gunfire broke out, killing 16-year-old Tremiyah Lindsey. She was a senior at Glen Oaks High School.

The person who shot back is not expected to be charged because of self-defense.

“Today all hands were on deck at Glen Oaks High School,” said East Baton Rouge Chief of Schools Dr. Sharon Williams. “We do have an increased security presence on our campuses when events like this happen.”

Williams said Friday’s incident is a message to parents.

“We’re very highly aware that parents and family members may be involved in these types of situations and we take it very seriously,” she said.

The list of violent juvenile crimes in the Baton Rouge area continues. Just last week a Zachary high school student was arrested for stabbing. Another teen was shot in Tigerland.

“If you ask a 15-year-old where you’re going to be in five years, you know, unfortunately sometimes we get dead or in jail,” said Judge Adam Haney.

Haney said over the past year, juvenile crime has decreased but the severity of the crime is becoming more violent.

In my first four or five years on the bench, I maybe handled three or four murder cases. And in the last year I’ve had five or six,” he said.

According to Haney, 13-15-year-olds are committing the most crimes.

“Just about every time I ask a young person who’s caught with a gun that comes through my court ‘Why did you have that gun?’…’I need it for protection,” said Haney.

He credits the uptick in crime to the stress of the pandemic, shutdown of schools and an increase in domestic violence cases. Haney said combating the problem starts at home.

“We’re not going to solve this problem, we cannot incarcerate our way out of this,” he said.

The East Baton Rouge School system plans to partner with the mayor’s office to help better understand how violence in the community spreads into the classroom.

Police said the man they say started Friday’s shooting is still in critical condition. He will be charged with five counts of attempted first-degree murder once released.

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