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News Link • Criminal Justice System

Profiting From Prisons – American Teens Jailed for Having Sex or Being Late to School

•, By Sarah Seltzer

The case of an honors student in Texas shines light on a national problem: teens going to jail for absurd reasons.

Last week, America was riveted by the story of young Diane Tran, a high school junior age 17, who was tossed in jail for a night because she was missing too much school.

The reason her case attracted so much attention? Tran missed those days of school–or arrived late–due to exhaustion. She worked two jobs to help support her siblings. Her parents had split and moved out of town. She became, in essence, a poster-girl for both the recession and for the criminalization of youth. Even those local newscasters expected to be dispassionate were moved to say their “hearts went out” to this girl.

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