A 19 Action News investigation has found hundreds of teens wanted for felony crimes in Cuyahoga Count, even dozens wanted for violent crimes including murder.
As of August, 1,642 juveniles were wanted for felonies.
Doing a quick check, we found 11 wanted for murder, half a dozen for rape, ten for concealed weapons, and dozens for robbery or felony assault.
We asked juvenile judge Thomas O'Malley what's being done to track down wanted juvenile offenders. He says the court turns over warrants for wanted teens to the sheriff. But we found no unit dedicated just for that.
And it's not just a city problem. We looked at the addresses of the young and wanted in Cuyahoga County. We found addresses all over the city and the suburbs. Often the teens only get picked up when police or deputies run across them for something else.
Cuyahoga deputies have 11,000 'adult' felony warrants, and there are only so many deputies to track the wanted.
This week the Cuyahoga juvenile court is hosting the Juvenile Safe Surrender, a chance for people wanted on old juvenile warrants to turn themselves in and clear up the old cases in one stop. The first day, 29 surrendered. The most serious crimes for that program on the first day were theft and aggravated menacing.
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