Petition Closed

Florida resident, Cassidy Goodson, became pregnant while still in middle school. With a mother in denial, and no support system in place, Cassidy chose to hide the pregnancy. When she ultimately gave birth in her bathroom, not knowing what to do, the 14-year-old girl killed the newborn baby. These were the actions of a child without proper access and education about her options--not the choices of a fully-informed grown woman, and yet she is still being tried as an adult.

"Infant safe haven laws have been enacted in many states as an incentive for mothers in crisis to relinquish their babies to designated locations, but pregnant teens are poorly positioned to take advantage of these programs. If we are to reconsider how we respond to these acts, we must take steps to understand the causes of infanticide and deal with its complexity." Tamar Birkhead of the Juvenile Justice Information Exchange.

If tried and convicted as an adult, Cassidy could spend the rest of her life in prison. But if tried as a minor, she would be released at age 22. This is a young girl, and there is a juvenile justice system for a reason. There is no reason that a fourteen-year-old should have to spend her life in prison.

Letter to
State Attorney's Office for the Tenth Judicial Circuit of Florida State Attorney Jerry Hill
Try Cassidy Goodson as a Minor

Florida resident, Cassidy Goodson, became pregnant while still in middle school. With a mother in denial, and no support system in place, Cassidy chose to hide the pregnancy. When she ultimately gave birth in her bathroom, not knowing what to do, the 14-year-old girl killed the newborn baby. These were the actions of a child without proper access and education about her options--not the choices of a fully-informed grown woman, and yet she is still being tried as an adult.

"Infant safe haven laws have been enacted in many states as an incentive for mothers in crisis to relinquish their babies to designated locations, but pregnant teens are poorly positioned to take advantage of these programs. If we are to reconsider how we respond to these acts, we must take steps to understand the causes of infanticide and deal with its complexity." Tamar Birkhead of the Juvenile Justice Information Exchange.

If tried and convicted as an adult, Cassidy could spend the rest of her life in prison. But if tried as a minor, she would be released at age 22. This is a young girl, and there is a juvenile justice system for a reason. There is no reason that a fourteen-year-old should have to spend her life in prison.