Code Section

Welfare and Institutions Code - WIC

DIVISION 2. CHILDREN [100 - 1500]

  ( Division 2 enacted by Stats. 1937, Ch. 369. )
  

PART 1. DELINQUENTS AND WARDS OF THE JUVENILE COURT [100 - 1455]

  ( Part 1 enacted by Stats. 1937, Ch. 369. )
  

CHAPTER 2. Juvenile Court Law [200 - 987]

  ( Chapter 2 repealed and added by Stats. 1961, Ch. 1616. )
  

ARTICLE 17. Wards—Hearings [675 - 714]
  ( Heading of Article 17 renumbered from Article 8 by Stats. 1976, Ch. 1068. )

  
676.5.  

The right of victims of juvenile offenses to be present during juvenile proceedings, as specified in subdivision (a), shall be secured as follows:

(a) Notwithstanding any other law, and except as provided in subdivision (d), a victim and up to two support persons of the victim’s choosing shall be entitled to be admitted, on the same basis as he or she may be admitted to trials in a court of criminal jurisdiction, to juvenile court hearings concerning petitions filed pursuant to Section 602 alleging the commission of any criminal offense, and shall be so notified by the probation officer in person or by registered mail, return receipt requested, together with a notice explaining all other rights and services available to the victim with respect to the case.

(b) A victim or his or her support person may be excluded from a juvenile court hearing described in subdivision (a) only if each of the following criteria are met:

(1) Any movant, including the minor defendant, who seeks to exclude the victim or his or her support person from a hearing demonstrates that there is a substantial probability that overriding interests will be prejudiced by the presence of the victim or his or her support person.

(2) The court considers reasonable alternatives to exclusion of the victim or his or her support person from the hearing.

(3) The exclusion of the victim or his or her support person from a hearing, or any limitation on his or her presence at a hearing, is narrowly tailored to serve the overriding interests identified by the movant.

(4) Following a hearing at which any person who is to be excluded from a juvenile court hearing is afforded an opportunity to be heard, the court makes specific factual findings that support the exclusion of the victim or his or her support person from, or any limitation on his or her presence at, the juvenile court hearing.

(c) As used in this section, “victim” means (1) the alleged victim of the offense and one person of his or her choosing or however many more the court may allow under the particular circumstances surrounding the proceeding, (2) in the event that the victim is unable to attend the proceeding, two persons designated by the victim or however many more the court may allow under the particular circumstances surrounding the proceeding, or (3) if the victim is no longer living, two members of the victim’s immediate family or however many more the court may allow under the particular circumstances surrounding the proceeding.

(d) Nothing in this section shall prevent a court from excluding a victim or his or her support person from a hearing, pursuant to Section 777 of the Evidence Code, when the victim is subpoenaed as a witness. An order of exclusion shall be consistent with the objectives of paragraphs (1) to (4), inclusive, of subdivision (b) to allow the victim to be present, whenever possible, at all hearings.

(Amended by Stats. 1999, Ch. 996, Sec. 19. Effective January 1, 2000.)