149 Kids and the Law If all of the jurors find beyond a reasonable doubt that the child has committed the offense, the child is adjudicated (convicted) of that delinquent offense. If the jury decides that the child is delinquent, the judge then imposes a disposi- tion (the sentence). If all the jurors agree that the allegations were not proven beyond a reasonable doubt, the child is found “not delinquent” of that charge. If the jurors do not all agree, it is a “hung jury” and a “mistrial” is declared. The ADA can then decide if the Commonwealth still wants to prosecute the case and schedule another trial. Not every case in the jury session goes to trial because the child can negotiate a plea bargain through their attorney. Even in the jury session, the child can choose to have a trial before the judge without a jury. What can the judge decide after the trial? If there is no jury, the judge is the “fact-finder” and, like a jury, must decide if the charges have been proven beyond a reasonable doubt. If the judge or jury decides that the Commonwealth (the prosecutor) has not proven the charges against the child beyond a reasonable doubt, the judge enters a finding of “not delinquent” and the child is released from the court. If the judge decides that the Commonwealth has proven the charges beyond a reasonable doubt, the judge will find there are sufficient facts to find the child delinquent. The probation officer will inform the judge if the child has been previously involved with any Massachusetts court. The probation officer may also give the judge background information about the child’s family and schooling. In some courts a probation officer may make a recommendation to the judge for sentencing. The ADA and defense attorney will make arguments to the judge about how the child should be sentenced. The judge can decide to “continue the case without a finding” known as a “CWOF.” If the child stays out of trouble and meets all “conditions of proba- tion” (see below) during the time the case is continued, the judge will dismiss the case and the child will have no record of convictions. Delinquent Children 11