Teen Court Out?

By Camaron Abundes
NewsWest 9

ODESSA- An agreement that allows the Odessa Teen Court into the Ector County Courthouse every Monday night is on the rocks, that's because local judges say some teens in the court we're caught stealing and vandalizing the courthouse.

The Judges stopped short of locking the doors on the Teen Court and say they want a resolution, but the teen court coordinator isn't buying it she says she never got a call concerning either accusation.

"We bring them into the courthouse, and try to explain to them, you know this is your courthouse, if you continue to act up, this is where you'll end up, but next time it will be twelve adults deciding how long you stay in prison," said Tammy Hawkins Coordinator of Teen Court.

Hawkins says she will be the first to admit the kids who go through the teen court program aren't perfect, but she says the court gives them a chance to turn things around. The Judges say they work inside the courthouse, and they don't want it destroyed.

"I want these children to become responsible for their own actions, and the only way we can do that is to show them what the real world is," she said, but she says she can't do that without a courtroom.

A long standing agreement gives the teen court two courtrooms, a jury room and a deputy inside the Ector County Courthouse.

"It's done, we voted the judges at the Ector County Courthouse, and we ask that you never come back," Hawkins said she heard these words from the Judges, that's when she asked them to hold off until they could all meet.

The judges agreed to meet. They will all sort it all out in a meeting October 29th. If they can not find a resolution, it will be up to the County Commissioners to decide where to move the teen court.