A criminal justice youth summit, hosted Liberty County Commissioner Justin Frasier March 5 at the Shuman Recreation Center, allowed teens the chance to asked a panel of lawyers, probation officers and law enforcement professionals, a variety of questions.
The panel included attorneys Jeffrey Osteen and Reginald Martin, Liberty County Sheriff’s Department officer Gary Richardson, Department of Corrections adult probation officer Michele Freeney-Washington and Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice juvenile probation parole specialist Kimberley Stevens.
They discussed the difference between profiling and probable cause, how to get a record expunged, probation, careers in criminal justice and other topics.
Audience comments included that it’s important for youth to have positive interactions with the police and that youth can ruin their futures with bad choices. A youth shared his experience about getting arrested and turning his life around.
Washington said she was once arrested for aggravated assault. Her family helped her turn her life around.
“Let your good outweigh the bad,” she told the audience.
Motivational speaker Shaka Dyson also talked about his arrest and probation.
“Life is a whole bunch of moments together,” Dyson said. “I was that guy getting arrested … Life can change if you decide to do something different with your moments.”
Aijalon Austin, a Bradwell senior, said she learned a lot at the summit.
“You know what’s right and wrong, but don’t get into depth about it,” Austin said. “It’s great to have something like this in the community to teach kids and it’s very essential.”
Frasier said the summit was to bring criminal justice professionals and citizens together. He said he plans to hold youth summits quarterly on different topics.