Under Maryland law, the Department of Juvenile Services is required to manage and supervise all detained youth in the juvenile justice system. A court may order a youth to be detained either in the community or in one of seven secure juvenile detention facilities operated by DJS. Most youth in the juvenile justice system are detained in the community under the supervision of DJS. The goal of DJS's various detention programs is to keep the youth and the community safe and ensure that the youth appears for their court date.
Intake is the first contact that DJS will have with a youth. DJS operates juvenile intake offices in every county in Maryland in order to evaluate and assess each juvenile delinquency complaint brought by police, citizens or schools and determine whether the case should be forwarded to a State's Attorney to initiate a court case.
A court may detain a youth either in the community under DJS supervision or in a secure juvenile detention facility. A youth may be detained as he/she awaits to go to their adjudicatory hearing (trial). A youth may also be detained after the adjudicatory hearing while he/she awaits placement in a court-ordered treatment program.
DJS's Community Supervision program is involved at each stage of the juvenile justice process from pre-court Informal Adjustment and Community Detention to post-disposition Probation and Aftercare and Re-entry. DJS provides enhanced community supervision and cooperative supervision of youth from other states.