“I’ve been here six months. My mom visit me three times a week. I have six brothers and three sisters. My Dad never visits. I’m here for aggravated robbery….but I wasn’t even involved. I was just with my cousins and they are now in jail awaiting trial. They are 23 or so. I’m a junior in high school. I can graduate with two more credits. I am here because of a bad decision. There can be a jury or a judge’s decision. I haven’t figured it out yet. My mom works at a plane company…I don’t know what my dad does. I’m not in a gang but there are gangs. Bloods, Crips, Gs, Loco Boys, NSG (North Side Gangsters), PLFs and Southsiders.
I met my public defender twice since I’ve been here [6 months].
Sometimes I have my moments when I’m upset. I sit and read the bible and ask God to let them know I didn’t have anything to do with it. I break down and have to talk to my Mom. Weekends I call her seven times, weekdays five times a day. I talk to my girlfriend everyday. She’s 17. This is my first time and I shouldn’t be here. They keep getting my court date pushed back by the D.A. I met my public defender twice since I’ve been here. I have no friends in here like on the outs. I used to be a kick return and punt return specialist for my high school.”
-N.O., age 17, Sedgwick County Juvenile Detention Facility, Wichita, Kansas