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Juvenile crime can have damaging consequences on a family, especially if the crime ends up in a conviction. Most of juvenile crimes will be held informally; however, if there is a conviction of the juvenile it has a profound impact on the juvenile and their family and can result in many significant future consequences. Conviction can result in losing a driver’s license, future employment issues, loss of financial aid for college and even eviction if the family lives in public housing. This can happen even if it is a minor offense such as marijuana possession. Juvenile courts will hear the cases of minors that are between the age 10 and 17.
If convicted, a child can receive probation, imprisonment in a probation camp, time in a juvenile prison and, for more serious crimes, they can be tried as an adult. Our attorneys have extensive experience with juvenile criminal defense and can provide an aggressive defense for your child. Our attorneys will fight for your child and seek counseling and rehabilitation instead of imprisonment if consequences will be imposed by the judge.
The defense of juvenile crimes can vary considerably and each case is unique in how it should be handled and represented. Our attorneys will review the facts of the case and will determine the best defense for your child.
You should contact an attorney immediately if your child has already been arrested, charged or is being investigated for a juvenile crime. Our attorneys can discuss the case with the prosecutor to see if there is another option besides filing a case in the event that your child was with another individual that committed the crime or was in the wrong place at the wrong time when the crime occurred.
One unique aspect of juvenile cases is that at any stage of the process they can be dismissed by the prosecutor, judge, juvenile intake officer or even the police. It is very important to have a knowledgeable attorney representing your child to have them review the charges and see if it can be dismissed as soon as possible.
The consequences for a juvenile crime can be very different as a juvenile crime is either a felony or misdemeanor. Having a strong, aggressive defense can make the difference between dismissal and a harsh and hefty penalty.
There are times when a juvenile case will be tried as an adult. These are the more serious cases for juveniles with a significant criminal record. The prosecutor and judge decide whether to try the juvenile in adult court and they look at the following factors:
• The crime’s severity and was it accomplished
• What was the degree of criminal sophistication in crime’s execution
• Will rehabilitation rather than punishment work
• Prior criminal record
In the event that the prosecutor decides to try your child as an adult, the juvenile case will be dismissed. The case will now be treated as if you child was an adult and resulting punishment can include jail time in the California Department of Corrections juvenile facilities that is called the California Youth Authority. A child can be imprisoned in the California Youth Authority until they are 25 and then they are transferred to the adult prison for the rest of their sentence. A juvenile can be housed at the California Youth Authority until they are 25 years old. If they have more time on their sentence then they will be transferred to an adult prison to complete their sentence.
Juvenile crimes can include the following:
• Theft and robbery
• DUI (Driving under the influence), alcohol consumption
• Speeding and reckless driving
• Gang crimes and assault
• Truancy and fighting in school
• Running away
• Gun and weapons possession
• Sex crimes, sexual assault
• Battery and assault crimes
• Vandalism and graffiti
• Drug possession, transportation and sales
• Crimes involving marijuana
• Other felonies or misdemeanors
Our attorneys have the knowledge to aggressively defend your child and will attempt to get a dismissal or rehabilitation and counseling rather than having the charges filed. Their extensive experience will be the difference in a harsh penalty or the best possible outcome for your child.