Accusations Against Juveniles
A juvenile is defined in Texas as being any person under the age of 17, but older than the age of 10. These boys and girls are treated differently in the court system than adults. In general, while adult criminal sentencing is punitive, the juvenile system is geared towards rehabilitation and ensuring the child does not offend further. Even still, the penalties for juvenile offenders can be serious.
Understanding Juvenile Law
There are certain offenses that are specific to juvenile offenders. These crimes are those which are not illegal for adults. Truancy and curfew violations, for example, are specifically juvenile offenses, as are more serious crimes such as underage drinking.
Despite efforts towards rehabilitation, there are certain very serious offenses that will result in a juvenile being charged and tried as an adult in a process called “certification.” A certified juvenile is one that has committed a serious felony or violent crime such as assault with a deadly weapon. In such cases, the juvenile court will have a hearing where arguments are presented regarding transfer to the adult penal system.
The juvenile justice system in Texas has separate and special courts dedicated to juvenile offenses. At The Law Office of Philip M. Gommels, we defend every type of juvenile case.
Defending the Rights of the Juvenile
Despite the courts being separate and distinct from the adult justice system, juveniles have many of the same rights as adults. These include:
Hire a Juvenile Crimes Lawyer Immediately
If a juvenile is detained by an officer of the law, the first thing to remember is not to resist under any circumstances. Immediately request an attorney and get in touch with guardians. Do not give any information other than name, address and contact information for guardians. If you are being interrogated by law enforcement, YOU HAVE THE RIGHT TO REMAIN SILENT.
If your child has been arrested for any texas juvenile crimes, call Philip M. Gommels today for a consultation.