Getting arrested and being charged with a crime, even if it is a first-time offense, can significantly impact a minor’s future educational and employment opportunities. That is why it is imperative to consult a Miami juvenile defense attorney experienced at defending minors’ rights and obtaining the best possible outcomes for young clients.
Typically, juvenile offenses are tried as civil cases in juvenile court. Florida’s juvenile justice system emphasizes providing rehabilitation for young offenders over punishment. Cases can result in fines, informal or formal probation, placement with foster care, or enrollment in a school specifically for juvenile offenders. Though children are typically released into the care of parents or guardians, this sentence can also mandate that he/she be committed to a juvenile detention center for up to 21 days.
Juveniles are commonly charged with the following offenses.
- Vandalism and Graffiti
- Theft Crimes
- Underage DUI
- Drug Offenses
- Assault and Battery
For particularly serious or violent charges, some prosecutors seek to have minors as young as 14 tried as adults. Such cases are decided by adult criminal courts and juvenile offenders risk getting a conviction on their record or even a prison sentence. A criminal record forever labels a minor as a convict, which will have lasting detrimental consequences on his or her life.
According to statistics from the Florid Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ), Florida is one of the leading states when it comes to trying minors as adults. To prevent this from happening to you or a child you know, it is necessary to have an experienced Miami juvenile defense attorney by your side.