Juvenile crimes are any crimes committed by a person under the age of 18 being handled in the Juvenile Court system. The Juvenile Court system seeks to rehabilitate young offenders rather than punish them so it offers a wide range of jail alternatives, including:
- Treatment programs
- School-based programs
- Social service programs
- Juvenile detention
- Community service
If your young person is involved with the California juvenile justice system, you need a strong legal advocate on your side to see that your child and your family comes out of this with the best chance for a good future.
We have been representing juveniles facing all types of criminal charges, both in California Juvenile Court and in adult courts, for many years. You won’t find many attorneys with more experience than we have in criminal defense. We’ve represented young people charged with:
- Theft crimes, including auto theft, joyriding, shoplifting, petty theft, and burglary
- Underage drinking and drunk driving
- Drug crimes, such as possession of marijuana, possession of meth, possession with intent to sell, and distribution and manufacture of drugs
- Sex crimes, including date rape, sexual battery, and child molestation
- Gang-related crimes
- Weapons offenses
- Juvenile violent crimes, such as assault and battery, assault with a deadly weapon, kidnapping, manslaughter or murder
Depending upon the severity of the crime, the young person’s history of criminal offenses and the strength of the case, many young people will find alternatives to jail time available to them.
What to do as a parent
If your child is involved in a juvenile delinquency case that means he or she is accused of breaking the law.
The court will consider how old your child is, how serious the crime is, and the child’s criminal record if any. The court can order that:
- Your child live with you under court supervision.
- Your child be put on probation. He or she may have to live with a relative, in a foster home or group home, or in an institution.
- Your child be put on probation and sent to a probation camp or ranch.
- Your child can be sent to the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Division of Juvenile Justice (also called “DJJ”). If your child is tried in adult court, he or she will be sent to the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Division of Adult Operations (also called “CDCR”).
If your child is sent to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Division of Juvenile Justice (DJJ), he or she will go to a “reception center” for the first 30 to 90 days. The center will find out what education and treatment your child needs. Then your child will go a correctional facility or youth camp.