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Irving Weekly Title

Dallas, Texas News

Murder Verdict Sparks Call for Juvenile Justice Reform in Dallas County

Anthony Lewis

Dallas County Criminal District Attorney John Creuzot issued a statement on September 22, 2023, on the conviction of Anthony Lewis for the Capital Murder of Leslie Baker.

The murder of Leslie Baker is a tragedy in the truest sense. A life was needlessly taken at the hands of a juvenile.

We are thankful to secure this verdict for the Baker Family and their loved ones, but this is not a joyful day. There is no bringing Leslie back and there is no joy in sending a young person to prison for a minimum of 40 calendar years.

We want to thank the jury, the Baker Family, their loved ones and friends, Detective Scott Sayers and the Dallas Police Department, the Arlington Police Department, the Richardson Police Department, Judge Raquel Jones, and all of my staff who worked diligently on this case.

This case, however, also provides an opportunity to shed light on the changes being made in the Dallas County Juvenile Justice System.

As we see the numerous reports regarding the controversy between the Juvenile Board and Commissioners Court, I want to take a moment to call attention to the fact that it's evidence in this case that brought my attention to the possible shortcomings of this office and the juvenile department. This case, in part, is why I requested the study of the Dallas County Juvenile Justice System.

It is my belief today that the juvenile system that existed in Dallas County at the time this offense occurred, contributed to recidivism as opposed to fostering rehabilitation.

Though it is in hindsight, I would hope that our new processes going forward from this office, in collaboration with the juvenile department and juvenile judges, will make it less likely that a juvenile can commit the quantity and type of crimes that were brought out in evidence in this trial

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