Illinois lawmakers OK lawyers for juvenile murder suspects

An Illinois measure guaranteeing lawyers for juveniles under age 15 during murder interrogations has cleared both chambers.

House members overwhelmingly supported the measure sponsored by House Democratic Leader Barbara Flynn Currie that would require lawyers for children under 15 in murder and sex offense interrogations. Current law only guarantees lawyers to children under 13 in those cases.

The bill would also require simplified language telling juveniles their rights to remain silent.

Democratic Sen. Patricia Van Pelt, another of the bill's sponsors, says children often falsely confess to crimes because they don't understand the process. She initially proposed a measure that would require legal representation for juveniles under 18, but lowered the age to gain Republican support.

The proposal now heads to Gov. Bruce Rauner.