Sanction Guidelines


Effective January 1, 1996, sanctions to ensure that juvenile offenders face uniform and consistent consequences and punishment that corresponds to the seriousness of each offender's current offense were initiated. There are seven sanction levels with each one being more restrictive than the other. If a child commits another offense or does not comply with the rules, a higher, more restrictive sanction may be applied. Probationers and parents or guardians should make every effort to comply with each requirement of a sanction.

LEVEL I may require counseling for such offenses as runaway and truancy.
LEVEL II may result in placement of the Juvenile in the Deferred Prosecution Program, Which is an informal probation period of three (3) to six (6) months. Class A and B misdemeanor cases such as shoplifting, criminal mischief, possession of marijuana or harassment are examples of cases in the Level II category. Restitution may be required for Level II and all succeeding levels.  
LEVEL III cases include:
  1. misdemeanor offenses with weapons,
  2. state jail felonies such as burglary of a building, injury to a child, elderly or disabled individual, or
  3. third degree felony cases involving large amounts of marijuana or other drugs, criminal mischief or theft over $1500 or assault with serious injury.
These offenses may result in formal probation not less than six months.  
LEVEL IV includes second degree felony offenses such as dangerous drugs, arson, burglary of a residence, sexual assault, or aggravated assault. This level of supervision may require three (3) to twelve (12) months in an intensive and regimented probation program, followed by standard probation.  
LEVEL V supervision requires six (6) to twelve (12) months in a highly structured secure correctional facility, followed by standard probation. Offenses included in this level of supervision are arson with injury, serious injury to a child, aggravated robbery or aggravated sexual assault.  
LEVEL VI includes robbery or other first degree felonies committed with the use of a weapon. This level of supervision provides for commitment to the Texas Youth Commissionfor nine (9) to twenty-four (24) months, a highly structured residential program.

LEVEL VII may result in the following:
  1. A determinate sentence to the Texas Youth Commission for one (1) to ten (10) years, with the possibility of transfer to the Adult Prison System, or
  2. A Court or Jury may impose determinate sentence probation for up to ten (10) years. (Determinate Sentence Probation may only be applied to offenses occurring on or after September 1, 1999) § HB 351

Juveniles 15 years of age or older and, in some cases, those 14 years old who have committed serious crimes, and have been transferred by the Juvenile Court to be tried under the adult system. This process is called certification.