In Kentucky, running away from home or constantly skipping school could get a kid locked up in a juvenile hall for days. Those acts, called status offenses, aren't serious crimes, but for years Kentucky and other states treated them as though they were.
That first brush with the juvenile justice system can often lead to more trouble if authorities focus on punishment, not the underlying reasons for the bad behavior.
But there's growing evidence that the tough approach doesn't work. Kentucky has joined many other states that are trying something different.