Parents, tasked with bringing their children to juvenile court in Williamson County, Texas, are often confused as to where to go. As a practicing Juvenile Defense Attorney in central Texas, I regularly practice in the Williamson County Juvenile Court, and understand how people can easily get confused about this. Several people have asked me about this lately and I thought a blog post about it might be useful. I had planned a more substantive juvenile post this morning, but all the explanations in the world about juvenile law won’t help if you can’t get to the right courtroom. So today, a practical, hopefully helpful post, and a more typical post next time.
So, why is this an issue? The 395th Judicial District Court, sitting as the Juvenile Court for Williamson County, is in session in two different places within the county, depending on the day of the week.
On Mondays, and certain Tuesdays or Wednesdays when the law requires detention hearings, the Juvenile Court holds session at the Williamson County Justice Center, more commonly known as the Williamson County courthouse. The courthouse is located at 405 M.L.K. Street, Georgetown, TX 78626. You can find a mapquest map of the courthouse here, and the webpage for the 395th here.
On Thursdays the Juvenile Court holds session at the Williamson County Juvenile Justice Center on the Inner Loop in Georgetown. The Juvenile Justice Center is a large, multipurpose building that contains not only a courtroom where Juvenile Court is held, but the Juvenile Detention Center where juveniles accused of crimes and not released to parents are held, the Williamson county Academy (which includes both the Academy program and the Juvenile Justice Alternative Education Program or JJAEP), and the administrative offices of Juvenile Services.
The Juvenile Justice Center is located at 1821 S.E. Inner Loop, Georgetown, TX 78626. You can find a mapquest map of the address here, and more information about the location or Juvenile Services here.
Why the two locations? I have asked different county officials and heard a few reasons: (1) When the Juvenile Justice Center was built, a courtroom was included and it hardly makes sense to let such a facility go unused, (2) having court at least once a week in the Juvenile Justice Center makes it easier for parents to combine a trip to court with a visit to those youth’s held in juvenile detention and for easier for parents to receive youths being released after a court decision, and (3) the schedule is a compromise since some Juvenile Services personnel have their offices in the Juvenile Justice Center and courtroom and prosecutor personnel have their offices in the courthouse building.
All of these reasons seem straightforward and make a certain amount of sense to me. In any case, I hope this post proves helpful, that everyone makes it to court on time, and that no one has to worry about Directives to Apprehend for failing to show up to court.
What is a Directive to Apprehend? Keep checking this blog for the answer in a future post.