Local judge stresses more family involvement for troubled teens - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Local judge stresses more family involvement for troubled teens

There is an alternative for troubled teens. There is an alternative for troubled teens.

Police say a 63-year-old homeowner, who wants to remain anonymous, shot and killed 16-year-old Devon Antonio Young on Sunday.  She says Young barged into her home carrying a shotgun and demanding money out of her safe, that's when she fired her gun striking him at least once.

In the wake of Sunday's deadly home invasion, we're taking a closer look at how juveniles can avoid jail time or worse. The home owner says "Go and get you and education and get you a good job so you can buy what you want. Don't try to take from somebody who has worked all their lives."

"I think it's probably a lack of family supervision and the lack of family and church involvement if I had to sum it up briefly," says District Court Judge Scott Crichton.

Judge Crichton sees it all too often a juvenile throwing his or her life away because of a bad choice.  He says, "The young person seeks friendship in the streets and sometimes one thing leads to another sometimes."

Bill Wilson is a retired Shreveport police officer, "We all make bad mistakes and I thought he was getting into a bad crowd," he put his son Conner through a program taught by Judge Crichton called "Don't let this be you."

The program takes teens on a jail tour for a front row seats into what could be their future."He didn't want to be there, no," says Wilson. "Adolescence these days love their freedom and once he heard those doors close, there was no getting out."

Crichton adds, "My thought all along has been an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.  Parents need to be involved with their kids every day. Let's talk about school. Let's talk about friends, let's talk about events in your life."

Wilson says Conner turned his life around and now has a job, "More of them need to go, when they hear that metal door clang."

"Everybody has worth, every young person has talent. It's a matter of learning what that talent is and developing it," says Crichton.

And while it may be too late for Devon Young, the message to teens seems clear, "Don't let this be you."

For more information on the "Don't let this be you" program, Click here.

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