As parents, we do the best we can. So it can be tough to know what to do when your child has been charged with a crime. A minor committing a crime is not uncommon. The crimes themselves can range from mostly harmless to serious violence– every case is different. When your child has been arrested and charged with a crime and will most likely be going to court, your best bet is to get them a juvenile criminal defense lawyer.
When your child becomes a juvenile offender, the criminal case is essentially going to be managed by the juvenile court system that exists in your state. While this all may seem very overwhelming, the fact of the matter is that they are better off being tried by a juvenile justice system than one for an adult. The goal in juvenile court is to rehabilitate juvenile offenders and help them get onto a better path before they become an adult and their crimes continue– but this time they are being charged as an adult.
Even though your child is going to be tried as a juvenile, it doesn’t mean that the consequences might not be severe. Read on to find out more about what you should do when your child has been charged with a crime.
Hiring legal counsel is a smart move when your child is dealing with any legal situation. When arrested and charged with a crime, you as the parent should speak to a legal professional the instant you find out. Lawyers in this area have a lot of experience working with these types of cases and communicating and working with parents of minors.
Lawyers that have experience in this area know how the court works and can help attempt to get sentences reduced. They will also make sure that the minor in question is charged appropriately. This is important because many juvenile offenders are prosecuted in adult court while under the age of 18. Some states even have a limit at 15 or 16 years of age for minors (NY, CA). However, juveniles that make the cut are most likely tried in juvenile court.
When tried in juvenile court minors may get far more lenient sentences than they otherwise would. They may also be checked on and found to benefit from counseling– and they won’t have to go to a traditional trial. However, they may also be placed in a group home, foster care, or under e-surveillance. A good lawyer will make sure your child gets a fair sentence and may even be able to persuade the judge to take more lenient alternatives or give a more mild sentencing.
You don’t want your child tried as an adult because these mean that they are either serious crimes or your child is, unfortunately, a repeat offender being tried for a serious crime and they may be transferred to adult court. Contact The Law Offices of Payas, Payas, and Payas for a consultation today and see what you can do about your child’s case. They’ll give you great representation and do everything they can to help your child’s case turn out well.