Juvenile Criminal Defense
Orange County Juvenile Criminal Defense Attorney
If a minor is facing Juvenile criminal charges, you are most likely worried about how their future will be affected. A Juvenile Criminal Defense Lawyer can help their case. Will these charges have an impact on them getting into college, or landing their dream job? As a parent, it is expected for you to have these concerns. Here at Robert Miller & Associates, our team is dedicated to doing everything in our power to protect the rights and futures of our clients.
For over 22 years, our Orange County Juvenile Criminal Defense attorney has been devoted to the practice of criminal defense. As a team that has obtained favorable results for numerous clients, we have proven our commitment and passion for defending the criminally accused.
What is a juvenile offense?
In California, a juvenile offense occurs when an individual that is under the age of 18 commits an act that is prohibited by the law. While minors are subject to penalties for the same types of crimes that adults are, they may also face punishment for breaking other laws, such as truancy and curfew.
According to the Federal Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, approximately half of juvenile arrests are made for theft, drug abuse, disorderly conduct, simple assault, and curfew violations. Every year, an average of about 3% of cases heard in juvenile court involve violent offenses such as aggravated assault, robbery, rape, and murder.
Juvenile vs. Adult Courtroom Proceedings
The procedures implemented for when a juvenile is accused of violating a criminal statute is very different than those used in an adult criminal court. Law enforcement officers, prosecutors, juvenile court intake officials, and juvenile court judges all have broad discretion to take more informal steps when handling a minor’s case. As a result of this, numerous young offenders never have to go through a formal adjudicatory hearing.
Minors facing criminal accusations go to juvenile court, where their proceedings are civil as opposed to criminal. This means that instead of being formally charged with a crime, minors are accused of committing a delinquent act. However, not all cases heard in juvenile court are considered to be delinquency cases.
The three different types of juvenile court cases include:
Juvenile delinquency cases:
These cases involve a minor committing a crime that, had they been an adult, would have led to them being tried in a regular criminal court.
Juvenile dependency cases:
These cases involve a minor who is abused or neglected by their parents or guardians. Ultimately, the judge will decide if the minor should be removed from their home environment if it is unstable or unsafe.
Cases involving status offenses:
These cases apply only to minors, because adults do not face charges for the same actions. This may include truancy, curfew violations, running away, or underage drinking.
Often called “disposition orders,” there is a wide variety of sentencing options if the juvenile is found delinquent. Penalties for a juvenile offense may include time in a juvenile detention facility, or house arrest. However, the court will most likely implement a range of punishments that do not involve confinement such as counseling, curfew, and probation.
Protect Your Child’s Future
When your child’s future is on the line, it is important to ensure you have a team working with you that will relentlessly fight to protect their rights. In retaining our services, you can be confident that our team will put forth our best effort, and we can work to help see that your child’s charges are reduced or dismissed.