The arrest of a child is a parent’s worst nightmare. Young people are more likely to act on impulse and fail to think through their actions the way adults do. Those impulsive decisions could lead to mistakes that have lifelong consequences on their future.

The courts treat juvenile cases differently than adult cases. It is critical that you discuss those differences with a Fremont juvenile defense lawyer before your child goes through the criminal court system. An experienced attorney could help prepare you for the process and tirelessly defend your child’s future.

Differences in Juvenile Crimes Laws

The juvenile courts have jurisdiction over children ages eight until their 18th birthday. In juvenile court, a judge decides the ruling on their own rather than a jury. There is no mandatory minimum sentencing for juveniles, and most of the time, they may be eligible for diversion programs. Diversion programs offer youths the opportunity to attend programs, classes, community service and make amends with their victims in place of a permanent record and jail sentence.

A seasoned Fremont juvenile defense attorney can go through all the feasible options and help a parent decide on the best choice for their child. Some of the significant differences between juvenile and adult court are listed below:

  • A youth whom a court finds guilty of a crime is an adjudicated delinquent rather than a convicted criminal.
  • These cases involve adjudication hearings rather than jury trials.
  • Juvenile cases focus more on rehabilitation than punishment.
  • The juvenile court is more informal than adult court.

Preparing a Defense for Juvenile Court in Fremont

Though juvenile court treats minor offender cases differently, defendants and their families still must take these charges seriously. A skilled attorney could advise the minor and their parents of all available options to decide which is the best in their particular case. In some instances, a pretrial diversion program is the best avenue; in other cases, going to trial is the right decision. A local juvenile defense lawyer could thoroughly explain the procedures and help a family understand how the court system works.

State Juvenile Crimes Statute

Nebraska Revised Statute 43-276 allows for a juvenile to enter pretrial diversion intervention rather than the court system at the state prosecutor’s discretion. The purpose of pretrial diversion is to redirect youths away from formal processing in the juvenile justice system while also holding them accountable for their actions. Other benefits are that the youth will avoid time in a juvenile detention center and will not have a criminal record if they successful complete the diversion program. These programs have been proven to reduce the chances of repeat offenses by juveniles.

Juvenile Facing Charges as an Adult

The state has strict guidelines that they must follow to determine which crimes a juvenile may face as an adult. The prosecutor will consider the charge as well as the defendant’s age at the time of the alleged crime.

Some of the crimes a juvenile may face indictment for as an adult include murder, rape, and armed robbery. If a child faces charges as an adult in Fremont, Nebraska, it is all the more necessary for them to secure dedicated representation from an attorney experienced in juvenile defense.

Contact a Fremont Juvenile Defense Attorney Today

If your child faces trial for criminal charges, take the accusations seriously and get legal help as soon as possible. Your child’s future could depend on it. With these complex cases, it is important to work with a compassionate and experienced attorney who understands the system and empathizes with what your family is going through.

With a Fremont juvenile defense lawyer, you may be better equipped to protect your child and their future. Call today to get started.