LANSING — A package of bills passed the Michigan House today which would raise the age for automatic prosecution as an adult from seventeen to eighteen.  Currently, Michigan is one of only four remaining states that automatically considers seventeen-year-olds to be adults for criminal offenses, including Georgia, Texas and Wisconsin. House Bills 4133-4146 and 4443 have been sent to the Senate for consideration. In response, state Rep. Wendell Byrd (D-Detroit) issued the following statement:

“Reducing recidivism in our youth population first requires that we both allow them the opportunity to recover from their mistakes and provide them the support they need to become successful and productive members of their communities. Raising the age is the best way to give our young people a fighting chance to turn their lives around, and it is long overdue.”