By NORMA LOVE
CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - New Hampshire's House has given preliminary approval to treating 17-year-olds accused of crimes as juveniles instead of as adults.
The House voted 324-17 to approve the change and send the bill to the Finance Committee for further review before taking a final vote.
Forty other states and the federal government treat the youths as juveniles. New Hampshire lowered its age from 18 to 17 in 1996 and attempts to raise it have failed over the years.
Supporters argue the teens are still of an age when they can be rehabilitated if sent to the state reformatory instead of prison.
But the state's police chiefs argue the teens should be held accountable.
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