CHILDREN'S LAW CENTER

Case Law

South Carolina Child Protection

Core Foundation Cases
SC Dept. of Soc. Serv. v. Wilson, 543 S.E.2d 580 (S.C. Ct. App. 2001) 344 S.C. 332

Important Cases
Loe #1 v. Mother, Father, and Berkeley County Dept. of Soc. Serv., 675 S.E.2d 807 (S.C. Ct. App. 2009) 382 S.C. 457

SC Dept. of Soc. Serv. v. A.H., L.K., T.M., and D.M., 685 S.E.2d 835 (S.C. Ct. App. 2009) 386 S.C. 58

Michael P. and Lisa P. v. Greenville County Dept. of Soc. Serv., 684 S.E.2d 211 (S.C. Ct. App. 2009) 385 S.C. 407

SC Dept. of Soc. Serv. v. Scott K. and Nedra K., 668 S.E.2d 425 (S.C. Ct. app. 2008) 380 S.C. 140

Charleston County Dept. of Soc. Serv. v. Jackson, 627 S.E.2d 765 (S.C. Ct. App. 2006) 368 S.C. 87

SC Dept. of Soc. Serv. v. Headden, 582 S.E.2d 419 (S.C. 2003) 354 S.C. 602

South Carolina Juvenile Justice

S.C. Supreme Court Decisions_____________________________________

In re Williams, 217 S.E.2d 719 (S.C. 1975).
The absence of a parent, counsel, or other friendly adult does not make a statement given by a child to the police inadmissible.  The admissibility of a statement given by a minor is based upon the “totality of the circumstances” to include such factors as age, intelligence, education, experience, and ability to comprehend the meaning and effect of the statement.

In the Matter of Skinner249 S.E.2d 746 (S.C. 1978).
The common law presumption that a child between the ages of 7 and 14 is rebuttably presumed incapable of committing a crime is inapplicable to family court proceedings. The practical effect is that there is no age limit for bringing a delinquency proceeding in family court.

In Interest of Christopher W., 329 S.E.2d 769 (S.C. 1985).
The voluntariness of a minor's inculpatory statement must be proved by preponderance of evidence.       

State v. McCoy, 328 S.E.2d 620 (S.C. 1985).
Brady v. Maryland, 373 U.S. 83 (1963) (failure to provide defense exculpatory evidence in prosecution’s possession is a due process violation) does not apply in a waiver hearing.

Ex parte Columbia Newspapers, Inc., 333 S.E.2d 337 (S.C. 1985).
Family court proceedings are open to the press unless the judge makes a specific finding justifying closure.

State v. Sparkman, 339 S.E. 2d 865 (S.C. 1986).
A person’s juvenile record may be used in a subsequent court proceeding to impeach the person, as a defendant or witness, and at sentencing.

 

South Carolina Criminal

Core Foundation Cases
State v. Wallace, 683 S.E.2d 275 (S.C. 2009) 384 S.C. 428
State v. McKnight, 661 S.E.2d 354 (S.C. 2008) 378 S.C. 33
In re Ronnie A., 585 S.E.2d 311 (S.C. 2003) 355 S.C. 407
Hendrix v. Taylor, 579 S.E.2d 320 (S.C. 2003) 353 S.C. 542
State v. Council, 515 S.E.2d 508 (S.C. 1999) 335 S.C. 1
Whitner v. State, 492 S.E.2d 777 (S.C. 1997) 328 S.C. 1
State v. Schumpert, 435 S.E.2d 859 (S.C. 1993) 312 S.C. 502
Beaufort County Dept. of Soc. Serv. v. Strahan, 426 S.E.2d 331 (S.C. Ct. App. 1992) 310 S.C. 553
State v. Lyle, 118 S.E. 803 (S.C. 1923) 125 S.C. 406

Important Cases
Watson v. Ford Motor Company, 389 S.C. 434, (S.C. 2010) 699 S.E.2d 169
Smith v. State, 689 S.E.2d 629 (S.C. 2010) 386 S.C. 562
In re Chandler, 676 S.E.2d 676 (S.C. 2009) 382 S.C. 250
State v. Bryant, 675 S.E.2d 816 (S.C. Ct. App. 2009) 382 S.C. 505
State v. Douglas, 671 S.E.2d 606 (S.C. 2009) 380 S.C. 499
State v. Edwards, 644 S.E.2d 66 (S.C. Ct. App. 2007) 373 S.C. 230, affirmed as modified, 678 S.E.2d 405 (S.C. 2009) 373 S.C. 230
State v. Fonseca, 681 S.E.2d 1 (S.C. Ct. App. 2009) 383 S.C. 640
State v. Holder, 676 S.E.2d 690 (S.C. 2009) 382 S.C. 278
State v. Russell, 679 S.E.2d 542 (S.C. Ct. App. 2009) 383 S.C. 447
State v. Gaines, 667 S.E.2d 728 (S.C. 2008) 380 S.C. 23
State v. Kirton, 671 S.E.2d 107 (S.C. Ct. App. 2008) 381 S.C. 7
South Carolina DSS v. Lisa C. et al., 669 S.E.2d 647 (S.C. Ct. App. 2008) 380 S.C. 406
State v. Houey, 651 S.E.2d 314 (S.C. 2007) 375 S.C. 106
In re Beaver, 642 S.E.2d 578 (S.C. 2007) 372 S.C. 272
In re Brown, 643 S.E.2d 118 (S.C. Ct. App. 2007) 372 S.C. 611
State v. Ladner, 644 S.E.2d 684 (S.C. 2007) 373 S.C. 103
State v. Northcutt, 641 S.E.2d 873 (S.C. 2007) 372 S.C. 207
State v. Richardson, 595 S.E.2d 858 (S.C. Ct. App. 2004) 358 S.C. 586
State v. Tufts, 585 S.E.2d 523 (S.C. Ct. App. 2003) 355 S.C. 493
In re Allen, 568 S.E.2d 354 (S.C. 2002) 351 S.C. 153
In re Luckabaugh, 568 S.E.2d 338, 347 n.8 (S.C. 2002) 351 S.C. 122
State v. Walls, 558 S.E.2d 524 (S.C. 2002) 348 S.C. 26
State v. Warren, 534 S.E.2d 687 (S.C. 2000) 341 S.C. 349
State v. Council, 515 S.E.2d 508 (S.C. 1999) 335 S.C. 1
State v. Johnson, 512 S.E.2d 795 (S.C. 1999) 334 S.C. 78
State v. Nelson, 501 S.E.2d 716 (S.C. 1998) 331 S.C. 1
State v. Lopez, 412 S.E.2d 390, 393 (S.C. 1991) 306 S.C. 362
State v. Hale, 326 S.E.2d 418 (S.C. Ct. App. 1985) 284 S.C. 348
State v. Richey, 70 S.E. 729 (S.C. 1911) 88 S.C. 239
State v. Kromah, 737 S.E.2d 490, 401 S.C. 340 (S.C. 2013)
State v. Jennings, 716 S.E.2d 91, 394 S.C. 473 (S.C. 2011)

US Supreme Court Child Protection

 

US Supreme Court Juvenile Justice

U.S. Supreme Court Decisions______________________________________

Kent v. United States, 383 U.S. 541 (1966). 
A juvenile court does not have unlimited parens patriae power and is not entitled to act with “procedural arbitrariness.” A juvenile facing waiver to adult court must be provided the basic requirements of due process, including a hearing, effective assistance of counsel, and a statement of reasons for the decision. The Court also provided eight determinative factors to be considered by the judge in deciding whether the juvenile court’s jurisdiction over the offense will be waived.

In re Gault, 387 U.S. 1 (1967).
In hearings that could result in commitment to an institution, juveniles must be afforded many of the same due process rights as adults in criminal cases, including the right to timely and adequate notice of the charges, the right to a full hearing on the merits of the case, the right to counsel, the privilege against self-incrimination, and the right confrontation and cross-examination. 

In re Winship, 397 U.S. 358 (1970).
Proof beyond a reasonable doubt is the standard required for delinquency adjudications.

McKeiver v. Pennsylvania, 403 U.S. 528 (1971).
The Due Process Clause of the 14th Amendment does not guarantee the right to a jury trial in a juvenile court delinquency proceeding.

Breed v. Jones, 421 U.S. 519 (1975).
The Double Jeopardy Clause of the 5th Amendment prevents a juvenile who has been adjudicated delinquent in the juvenile court from subsequently being tried in adult court for the same offense.

Fare v. Michael C., 442 U.S. 707 (1979).
Factors to be considered under the “totality of circumstances” when determining whether a confession was voluntarily and knowingly given include “evaluation of the juvenile’s age, experience, education, background, and intelligence, and into whether he has the capacity to understand the warnings given him, the nature of his Fifth Amendment rights, and the consequences of waiving those rights.”

Schall v. Martin, 467 U.S. 253 (1984).
Preventative detention of juveniles is allowable under certain circumstances.

T.L.O. v. New Jersey, 469 U.S. 325 (1985).
The 4th Amendment’s prohibition on unreasonable searches and seizures applies to searches by public school officials. Students’ legitimate expectations of privacy must be balanced against the school’s equally legitimate need to maintain an educational environment, so school officials are not required to obtain a warrant or have probable cause that a crime occurred before searching a student, as long as the search is reasonable under the circumstances.

Roper v. Simmons, 543 U.S. 551 (2005).
The 8th and 14th Amendments forbid imposition of the death penalty for crimes committed while under the age of 18.

Graham v. Florida, 560 U.S. 48 (2010).
The 8th Amendment’s prohibition against cruel and unusual punishment does not permit a juvenile offender to be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole for a non-homicide offense.

J. D. B. v. North Carolina, 564 U.S. 261 (2011).
Age is relevant when determining whether an individual is “in custody” for Miranda purposes.

Miller v. Alabama, 567 U.S. ___ (2012). The 8th Amendment prohibits sentencing juveniles to life in prison without the possibility of parole for homicide crimes, where such a sentence is the only option.

Montgomery v. Louisiana, 577 U.S. ___(2016). Miller v. Alabama’s prohibition on life without parole for juveniles must be applied retroactively. States may remedy Miller violations by re-sentencing or offering parole to inmates sentenced to life as juveniles.

 

 

 

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