Minors have no common-law or constitutional right to be tried in juvenile court. Accordingly, there are a number of statutory options the state has under the Adult Code of Corrections to either try or sentence minors as adults. But all is not lost, according to veteran Cook County Public Defender Kathy Roller. In her October Illinois Bar Journal article, “Transfers, EJJs, and Defense Attorneys, Oh My!,” Roller leads a master class in fighting for a juvenile client who is facing the possibility of adult prison.
"There is a lot of work to be done in a short period of time and a child’s life hangs in the balance,” Roller writes. “The pressure and stress can be significant. Give this work the respect it deserves. So, panic once. And then let it go. Focus all of your energy on winning the case.”