Juvenile Crime Lawyer in Orlando

Juveniles make mistakes and sometimes good kids make bad choices. If your child was arrested or is accused of committing a crime, it is crucial to get them the help they need in addition to competent legal advice. An experienced attorney can help you and your family through this difficult and stressful time.  

The Juvenile Criminal Process

The Juvenile Justice System handles cases for minors under the age of 18 years old. It differs from the adult Criminal Justice System in that the Juvenile System places emphasis on rehabilitation rather than punishment. However, the penalties for a juvenile can be quite severe and can have lasting consequences for both the child and the child’s family.

The criminal process for minors differs from that of the adult system in a number of ways. For example, one major difference is that after a youth is “detained” by law enforcement, he or she may be taken to a Juvenile Assessment Center where it will be determined whether detainment is required. The Office of the State Attorney will then recommend prosecution or a referral to a juvenile diversion program.

Juvenile Diversion Programs

A juvenile diversion program may be available to minors in certain cases in the Orlando, Orange County area. These programs aim to rehabilitate the juvenile, eliminate the problem behavior, and prevent the youth returning to the criminal justice system. They are specifically designed for first-time, less serious offenders. If the minor waives his or her right to a speedy trial then, upon successful completion of the program, he or she will have the opportunity to have the criminal charges dismissed.

Minors can be Transferred to the Adult Criminal Justice System

In certain cases, minors can be prosecuted in the adult criminal justice system through a process known as “direct file.” Minors who are transferred to the adult justice system do not have the advantage of rehabilitation programs as in the juvenile system. In addition, a child convicted of a felony in the adult system may endure the consequences of the felony conviction for life.

Protect Their Future, Speak with an Orlando Area Attorney Right Away

When your child is accused of a committing a criminal offense, seek the legal advice of a qualified criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Not only can an attorney help guide and advise you and your child under Florida law, but he or she can also provide valuable insight to programs available to treat and help to rehabilitate the child. Call the Law Office of Mark Bakay to schedule an appointment to discuss the unique facts of your child’s case, as well as viable defenses to their charges and additional options available to your child.

Authoritative Sources: Office of the State Attorney

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