When we all were younger, we all made mistakes. While some were innocent enough and easily forgivable, there were some mistakes that may have caused us to break the law. With these mistakes, lessons came at a harsh cost, teaching us the difference between right and wrong in a way that may have been beyond our years.
Here in California, breaking the law while still under the age of 18 comes with considerable consequences. For instance, the juvenile justice system works very differently from the adult criminal justice system. Instead of a trial with a jury of your peers, you must plead your case to a judge who has ultimate authority over your future freedoms.
In addition to this, you may even be charged as an adult for certain crimes. Despite the fact that you could be charged as an adult though, you are not always afforded the same rights as an adult. This can be jarring for juveniles who may believe they have certain protections under the law when in fact they do not.
Getting legal representation is key to a successful defense
If you’re under the age of 18, you likely don’t have a lot of real-world experiences that would otherwise help you face criminal charges with a moderate level of confidence. You may be frightened by the prospect of going to court and facing a judge. You might even be afraid that you could be sent to jail. If facing juvenile crimes charges scares you, don’t worry. It’s a very adult reaction to the serious situation you are facing. If you consider what an adult might do next though, then contacting a criminal defense attorney with experience handing juvenile cases may be your next step.
Here at The Law Office of John W. Noonan, we understand the seriousness of juvenile crimes and know that many times, our clients are frightened and feel overwhelmed. Since 1963, we have provided aggressive criminal defense for young people all over Northern California. By providing our clients with excellent legal counsel, we protect what rights they do have and decrease the negative impact a criminal charge has on their life down the road.