Marlton Juvenile Crimes Lawyer
Compassionate Criminal Defense Lawyer John B. Brennan Represents Clients Facing Juvenile Crimes Charges in Burlington County, Camden County, Gloucester County, and Throughout New Jersey
When your child is arrested for a crime, it can be a nerve-wracking experience for any parent or family. While it is true that the juvenile justice system in New Jersey is focused on rehabilitating rather than punishing juvenile offenders, that does not mean that your child’s juvenile criminal charges should be taken any less seriously. A conviction for a juvenile crime can still result in time in juvenile detention, fines, and a juvenile criminal record that will continue to follow your child after he or she becomes an adult. For a sufficiently serious crime, there is also a risk that your child is transferred into the adult criminal justice system.
Facing Charges For A Juvenile Crime And Have Questions? I Can Help, Tell Me What Happened.
Even though your child is required to have representation from an attorney for his or her case, you still should seek out the assistance of a criminal defense attorney who understands juvenile criminal law. I’ve spent more than three decades practicing exclusively in criminal law, including 25 years spent as a criminal prosecutor. This gives me an important insight into how criminal cases are built by prosecutors; I use my unique perspective to thoroughly review the case against your child and develop tailored legal defense strategies aimed at having your child’s charges reduced or dismissed and to minimize the most serious consequences of your child’s charges. As a Certified Criminal Trial Attorney and member of the New Jersey Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, you can trust that I have the experience and skill to vigorously defend your child’s rights and interests both in and out of the courtroom.
Contact me today to set up a free, confidential consultation to discuss your child’s case in further detail and for a detailed, honest assessment of your child’s legal rights and options and the possible outcomes to his or her charges.
Juvenile Justice System Versus Adult Criminal Justice System in New Jersey
The juvenile criminal justice system in New Jersey has several key differences from the adult criminal justice system, including:
- Courts: Whereas adult criminal cases are heard in the trial court in the county where the crime took place, juvenile cases are heard by the family court in the county where the juvenile resides
- Right to an attorney: In adult criminal court, a defendant has the right to an attorney but can choose to self-represent, whereas New Jersey law mandates that juveniles must be represented by an attorney
- No trial-by-jury: Whereas defendants in adult criminal court have the right to trial-by-jury, in juvenile criminal court cases are heard and decided by a judge
- Sentencing: Whereas sentencing in adult criminal court has a focus or element of punishment, sentencing in juvenile cases is focused on rehabilitation and the “best interests” of the juvenile. As a result, judges in juvenile cases often have much more flexibility in sentencing options, including ordering counseling, community service, work or educational programs, alcohol/drug addiction treatment, writing projects, and drivers’ license suspension; juvenile criminal court judges still may order juveniles to serve terms of incarceration or detention and to pay fines or restitution, courts are more likely to order a juvenile to a sentence of probation to ensure he or she remains on good behavior
Dedicated Criminal Defense Attorney Fights for the Rights and Future of Juvenile Clients
Having spent more than 25 years as a prosecutor and over 30 working in criminal law, I’ve seen my fair share of cases involving juvenile offenders. I understand that children and young adults often make the mistake of committing a criminal offense due to immaturity, a lack of knowledge about the law and what is right and wrong, and a lack of experience in foreseeing the consequences of one’s actions. This is why the juvenile criminal justice system in New Jersey focuses on rehabilitation and getting juvenile offenders back onto the right path so that they avoid future criminal activity.
When you choose me to represent your child in his or her juvenile criminal matter, you can trust that I will do whatever it takes to ensure that your child’s mistake doesn’t become a permanent stain on his or her record and that he or she is given every opportunity to make progress towards a productive, law-abiding life as an adult.
Contact The Law Offices of John B. Brennan to Set Up a Free Initial Consultation
If your minor child has been charged with a crime, you need a criminal defense attorney with experience handling juvenile criminal cases. In addition to the traditional goals of seeking to reduce or dismiss charges, an effective strategy in a juvenile criminal case must also include a focus on the juvenile’s best interests and ensuring he or she is set up for a successful future as an adult. Contact my law office today to schedule a free, confidential consultation to discuss your child’s matter and to learn more about how I may be able to help your child secure the best possible outcome in his or her case.
Frequently Asked Questions about Juvenile Crimes in New Jersey
If the state wishes to try a juvenile as an adult for a crime, they will need to apply to the juvenile court for a “waiver”. A juvenile may be eligible for waiver into adult criminal court provided he or she is at least 15 years old and has committed a serious crime, such as homicide, sexual assault, aggravated assault, first-degree robbery, arson, kidnapping, carjacking, and certain weapons offenses. Because the consequences of a conviction in adult criminal court are far more severe than the outcomes in juvenile court, you need aggressive, experienced legal representation who will fight to keep your child’s case in juvenile court in the event the state seeks a waiver.
Although a juvenile criminal record is permanent like an adult criminal record, a person with a juvenile criminal record can seek to have that record expunged provided three years have passed after he or she has completed the juvenile sentence, has not been adjudicated delinquent, has not been convicted of an adult crime, does not have pending criminal charges, has not had an adult criminal record expunged, and has not been convicted of any disqualifying criminal offense.