What Is Juvenile Delinquency?
Juvenile Delinquency cases are filed by petition against children who are not yet recognized by the State as adults. If a child is the subject or target of an investigation, it is important to consult with legal counsel immediately in order to protect the child’s rights, most of which are similar and the same as those afforded to adults who are criminally accused. The end goal of Juvenile sanctions is to rehabilitate a child as opposed to merely punish the child. The Juvenile Court has an interest in taking into consideration all the surrounding issues affecting the child such as school, environmental issues, mental health and substance abuse issues in the home.
Parents of children charged in Juvenile Court play a vital part of this rehabilitation process. They give input about the child’s issues, and the Court seeks to help implement rules for the home that the child and the parent can abide by for the purpose of helping the child. Whether a child is charged in juvenile court is not necessarily determined by age, and therefore it is so important to consult with an attorney immediately about a child’s arrest. In many serious and violent felonies, children under the age of 18 can be charged as if they are already adults and must face adult court with adult consequences.