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With juvenile crimes, a lawyer is the key to a child's rights

Here in California, as well as across the United States, juveniles and adults alike are expected to follow the same laws. If these laws are violated, an individual can be held accountable in the court of law. But here is where the similarities between juveniles and adults stop in the eyes of the law.

Not only do juveniles go through a different criminal justice system than adults, but juveniles also do not have many of the same constitutional rights. As you can imagine, this can create not only confusion but considerable problems for juveniles accused of a serious crime.

Much of what people know about the law is learned from police procedural shows such as "CSI" and "Law and Order." But these television shows do not accurately depict what really goes on in the criminal justice system. More to the point, these shows rarely show what a juvenile will actually encounter when facing criminal charges. This means that juveniles, as well as their parents, may be ill equipped to handle the situation at hand.

This is where an experienced attorney comes into play. Because of a lawyer's knowledge of the California juvenile criminal justice system, they can effectively communicate the seriousness of the charges against the child as well as the penalties they could face if they are found guilty.

On top of that, a lawyer can explain what rights a juvenile is afforded by the U.S. Supreme Court such as, but not limited to: a phone call after being taken into police custody, the right to legal representation, the right to Fifth Amendment protection, and notice of the criminal charges against them.

As we have said many times before on this blog, criminal charges should be taken seriously as they can have a negative impact on a person's life. But this fact is more so true for juveniles who may see a huge chunk of their left taken away from them because they didn't understand the rights they had.

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