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East King County Youth Traffic Court

East King County Youth Traffic Court ("Youth Traffic Court") is a student-led organization that works with King County District Court to help resolve real cases of traffic citations issued to 16- and 17-year-old drivers, offering them an alternative to the traditional justice system. The cases are handled by a “restorative justice circle,” in which all of the Youth Traffic Court team members and all of the teens who received tickets participate.

How it works

Youth Traffic Court cases are handled by a panel of student volunteers implementing a philosophy of restorative justice. King County District Court judges oversee the program. Youth Traffic Court provides a place where teen drivers can work toward restoring the community's trust in them as a good driver and responsible citizen.


Youth Traffic Court is run by our youth, for our youth. Its mission is to provide first-time traffic offenders on the Eastside with an alternative to adult traffic court and give them an opportunity to restore justice to the community through service. At the same time, we develop high school students into problem solvers and leaders of their community as they learn how to determine an appropriate disposition for respondents.

Students gain real experience:

  • Working with people from many other schools
  • Learning how to question so they can obtain necessary information in a compassionate way
  • Handling responsibility

Youth Traffic Court participants also learn the principles of restorative justice.


Youth Traffic Court meets as follows:

  • First Tuesday evening of every month, except June and July, for training and preparing to handle cases
  • Second Tuesday evening of every month, except June and July, to handle the actual cases

The youth court concept

For more information on how youth courts work throughout Washington and the United States, visit:


As drivers in the community, we all have a responsibility to be as safe as possible on the road. However, we understand that mistakes can happen. By offering you the opportunity to participate in Youth Traffic Court, and assuming you successfully complete the recommended disposition within the 6-month period, you can:

  • Have the citation dismissed
  • Be relieved of the requirement to pay the fines associated with the infraction
  • Help restore the community’s trust in you


To be eligible to participate in a Youth Traffic Court hearing, you must:

  • Have been 16 or 17 years old when you received the traffic citation
  • Received a traffic citation that was filed in one of these King County District Court courthouse locations:
    • Bellevue
    • Issaquah
    • Redmond
  • No pending tickets
  • Not be under the jurisdiction of any court for a:
    • Civil infraction
    • Criminal traffic violation
    • Unlawful transit conduct
  • Not have a conviction for:
    • A criminal traffic offense
    • Unlawful transit conduct

Request a Youth Traffic Court hearing

Follow these steps to request a hearing in Youth Traffic Court:

  • Call King County District Court’s Redmond courthouse location at 206-477-3199
    • Tell the person who answers the phone that you are a teenager who recently received a citation and wish to participate in Youth Traffic Court 
  • A King County District Court judge will check to see if you are eligible. If you are eligible, the Court will:
    • Send you the Youth Traffic Court Agreement and Youth Traffic Court Request forms to review and sign. Once the signed forms are returned, the Court will:
      • Set a date for you in Youth Traffic Court
      • Notify you of your hearing date, time and location

Note: Youth Traffic Court is NOT included in the list of options on the citation you received in the mail or from a law enforcement officer. Do not look to the citation for information about Youth Traffic Court or for the option to participate.

Join the Youth Traffic Court Team

If you are a high school student in East King County and would like to participate in Youth Traffic Court, please complete a Youth Traffic Court volunteer application.

History -


East King County Youth Traffic Court was co-founded in 2018 by Bear Creek Student Bouke Spoelstra and Downtown School Student Farah Lindsey-Almadani, in partnership with King County District Court and the prosecutors of Bellevue, Duvall, Redmond and Sammamish. Youth Traffic Court works to empower local youth by helping resolve real cases of traffic citations issued to their peers.