What if My Child Is Charged and Arrested?
No parent is mentally prepared to learn their child has been charged with a criminal offense. The initial distress and shock of an arrest can be too much to handle for most parents. After all, you didn’t raise your child like this, but now you are in deep water.
As a concerned parent, you want to hire the best juvenile defense attorney. West Palm Beach parents should know that Florida state’s Sunshine law does keep some juvenile records confidential but not all of them. As per section 943.053 Florida Statutes, juvenile felony records are not protected, and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE) considers them public records. You don’t want to leave your child’s fate in the wrong hands or jeopardize their future and want to know everything about juvenile offenses and criminal charges. This blog post will answer all your questions related to child arrest and tell you what to do next.
What to Do When Your Child is Charged and Arrested?
If your child is in trouble with the law, you need to expect the unexpected. Panicking won’t help you nor your child, so stay calm and alert at the same time. Here is what to do if your child is charged or arrested.
Know Your Rights
The police have no right to detain and question your child without your presence. They will immediately inform you and then continue their duty. Your child cannot be questioned until accompanied by an adult.
However, if the police have reasons to believe that delay in questioning poses an imminent threat to someone else’s life or property, they will question your child. In such cases, the police have to ensure that a family member is present so that your child is treated fairly.
You can press charges against the police for questioning your child without your presence if there was no immediate threat or danger to someone else’s life or property.
Case Against Your Child
If your child is under 10, the police can’t take them to court and charge a criminal offense. Once above 10 years of age, your child will be treated equally to a young adult under 18 and dealt with by the Youth Justice System.
If your child is a first-time offender or committed a minor offense, the case won’t be forwarded to the court. Instead, the Police Youth Diversion Scheme will deal with the case. The penalties will be minor, and your child might not face jail time if things go smoothly. They will be given bail or presented in the Youth Court based on the severity of the crime. Whatever happens, lawyering up is the best way to mitigate any serious charges.
Hire a Juvenile Defense Attorney
If things go south and your child is charged with a serious offense, you should immediately hire a competent juvenile defense attorney. Hiring a lawyer from the start can strengthen your case and mitigate the chances of severe punishment. An experienced lawyer will make sure your child serves minimum time under serious offense but will try to convince the court to let them go on bail. Here is what to look for in an excellent juvenile defense attorney.
Special units treat juvenile cases. The lawyer you choose should have relevant knowledge of how things work in a juvenile case. Hiring someone who doesn’t understand the basics of juvenile court can lead to a disastrous end, and your child’s fate might be sealed. You should look for a lawyer knowledgeable in the proceedings, scheduling, postponement, and assignments that might give your lawyer time to prepare a solid defense for your child.
Experience is everything in the courtroom. No two cases are similar, and you’ll have difficulty finding a lawyer with the same experience. However, anything close to the offense committed by your child is good to go.
Can Minors Be Charged With Assault?
Kids get in trouble when they socialize with the wrong people. They act carelessly and make bad decisions. As a responsible parent, you must give them the attention they need. However, minors also have responsibilities like anyone else. They must follow the law and avoid physical confrontation. Taking any rash actions can lead to criminal charges, which leave a permanent mark on their record.
It’s natural for parents to panic when they get the dreaded call from the police or when law enforcement officers show up at their doorstep. Since most parents are unaware of the Youth Criminal Justice System, they don’t know what to do. When your child has been charged with a criminal offense or assault, you should immediately hire a juvenile defense lawyer.
Patrick R McKamey is an experienced juvenile defense attorney. He never gives up and starts preparing a solid defense from Day One.
To quickly get in touch with the law office of Patrick R McKamey, dial (561) 220-6708 or visit our website for more information.