If your child has been accused of a crime, you are probably terrified about what is going to happen to them—and chances are they are even more scared than you are. This is not the time for either of you to go it alone, and your child needs the best legal help possible. Consult with a skilled juvenile defense lawyer like John Patrick Dolan right away. No parent is ever prepared to deal with this type of shock, and chances are you have no idea what to do or how to protect your child. Millions of minors are arrested every year, and California law enforcement are not going to treat you any differently than anyone else, although you may be experiencing terrible heartbreak and worry.
The good news is that in California there is more of an emphasis on rehab of the minor child than incarceration. This doesn’t mean that they won’t be spending time away from home if charged, but with a strong legal defense, hopefully they can avoid jail or prison, or in the best scenario have the threat of a juvenile record eliminated altogether. If they are, however, found guilty of a crime, they may still be able to live in the home, or they may be put on probation; if so, they may be transferred to a probation ‘camp,’ and while this may be scary, it is better than going to jail or prison, and is usually the attempt to get kids straight without flooding jails or prisons further—or putting them in contact with hardened criminals.
While keeping the public protected from serious safety issues is the number one goal of law enforcement, today they do try to treat and rehabilitate juveniles through a variety of programs, whether they have mental health issues, drug problems, or more. In California, a wide range of agencies work with the court system to help keep kids out of more serious facilities. Social service assistance is almost always available, along with support and supervision from the community offering programs—and from schools too. Probation departments in California are usually left to supervise juveniles who have been in trouble, with a very small percentage being committed to facilities.
If your minor child has been charged with a crime, call Dolan Law Offices as soon as possible. We have defended hundreds of adults and juveniles in these matters, with successful results—and it is very important to try and avoid something like a gang crime conviction that would be on your child’s record permanently, leading to further escalation if there were another charge in the future. Call us at (760) 775-3739 or contact us online as soon as possible.