Juvenile Delinquency and Juvenile Offender Matters
As a parent, there are few things more upsetting than finding out your child has been accused of committing a crime. When a person who is under 16 years old, but is at least 7 years old, commits an act which would be a “crime” if he or she were an adult, and is then found to be in need of supervision, treatment or confinement, the person is called a “juvenile delinquent”. All juvenile delinquency cases are heard in Family Court although children who are 13, 14 and 15 years old who commit more serious or violent acts may be treated as adults and have their cases heard in Supreme Court. If found guilty, the child is called a “juvenile offender”, and is subject to more serious penalties than a juvenile delinquent.
We are experienced in handling all phases of Juvenile Delinquency and Juvenile Offender matters in both Family Court and Supreme Court, including probable cause, evidentiary, and fact-finding hearings. The key to succeeding in these matters, however, is working closely with parents and spending the time to get to know the child, his or her family and the circumstances that led to the allegations. Every detail matters. The courts and prosecutors are sensitive to the mistakes that children make and look to find ways to educate, rehabilitate and keep families intact. Through careful preparation and persuasive advocacy, we have been successful in protecting the future of many children and helping them rebuild relationships of trust with their parents.