Juveniles Have A Right To An Attorney
Minor children who are arrested or referred to the South Carolina Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) can face vastly different futures, depending on the charges. Often, DJJ cases move exponentially faster than adult cases so it is important to act quickly in hiring an experienced criminal defense attorney. Some will receive probation or be required to go through diversionary programs. Others will be sentenced to DJJ detention facilities. The help of an experienced criminal defense lawyer can keep you informed of the process and also affect the path that your child takes.
Hire A Criminal Defense Team Of Former Prosecutors And Judge
At Young & Young, Attorneys at Law, you can trust our team of former prosecutors and experienced criminal law attorneys serving the Charleston area. We understand the importance of keeping children out of juvenile detention. Generally, it is better for the child to receive the help he or she needs than to be punished. We work with families to find the underlying cause of the child’s issues. The consequences of having a juvenile record can be serious, and we want to see your child work toward a better future.
When possible, we argue for diversionary programs such as drug court or juvenile arbitration instead of prosecution. This helps to address the issues the child is having and keeps him or her out of the justice system.
If the state decides to prosecute, a family court judge will hear the case and find the juvenile not delinquent (not guilty) or delinquent (guilty). Because there is no jury in these cases, it is important to have a lawyer represent your child before the judge.
If found delinquent, the juvenile may be put on probation or sentenced to a determinate (fixed amount of time) or an indeterminate commitment in a DJJ detention facility. In cases involving serious offenses or juveniles with prior offenses, sentences may continue after their 21st birthday in an adult detention center.