When your child is arrested and charged with a criminal offense, it is natural to be worried about their immediate and long-term future. After all, you don’t want them being sent to a juvenile detention facility or being forced to go through life with a criminal record hanging over their head.
Fortunately, there are some steps that you can take to try to protect your child’s future. The first, and arguably the most important, is to hire a skilled Cincinnati juvenile crimes lawyer to help them fight back against their charge. You can find plenty of those right here at Suhre & Associates, LLC.
How Our Legal Team Can Help Defend Your Child Against Their Juvenile Criminal Charges
Our Cincinnati criminal defense lawyers here at Suhre & Associates, LLC, believe that the children of Ohio should receive a vigorous defense when they are accused of committing a crime. So, when you ask us to help you fight back against your son or daughter’s criminal charge, we will:
Help Them Understand the Criminal Justice System
When kids are charged with a crime, they are often unsure of what to expect at each stage of the legal process. For many, the only exposure they have had to the criminal justice system in the past is through movies and television shows – many of which are highly inaccurate.
So, when our legal team begins work on your child’s case, we will provide them with a detailed overview of how the justice system works and give them an idea of what to expect as their case progresses. Should they have any additional questions, we will be on-hand to answer those, too.
Provide Them with Sound Legal Advice
As your child works their way through their case, they are all but certain to encounter some difficult situations. If they take on these challenges in an intelligent and well-thought-out way, they may be able to improve their chances of achieving a favorable outcome to their case. However, if they act rashly, they could make it easier for the prosecutor to convict them.
Over the years, the lawyers here at Suhre & Associates, LLC, have worked on everything from adult domestic violence cases to juvenile drug cases. As such, we have successfully worked through just about every tricky scenario your son or daughter is likely to encounter during their case. When we represent your child, we will provide them with the advice and guidance they need to tackle these challenges in a smart manner.
Negotiate with the Prosecuting Attorney
When handling juvenile cases, prosecutors generally prefer to avoid going to trial. Instead, they typically prefer to sit down with the child and their representative to negotiate a fair resolution to the case.
Because our attorneys have been negotiating with prosecutors in Ohio for many years, we understand how to convince them to offer more lenient sentences. When you hire us, we will do everything in our power to try to land a fair deal for your child.
Has your son or daughter been charged with a crime in Warren or Claremont Counties? If so, please pick up the phone and contact the knowledgeable attorneys here at Suhre & Associates, LLC. We would be more than happy to meet with you to provide you with more information about how we can protect your child.
Understanding Ohio’s Juvenile Delinquency Laws
The state of Ohio classifies everyone who is under the age of 18 as a juvenile. However, it does not categorize all kids who break the rules or misbehave as juvenile delinquents. According to section 2152.02 of the Ohio Revised Code, only children who violate state or federal laws that would be an offense if committed by an adult receive this designation.
A brief list of some of the most common offenses committed by juvenile delinquents would include:
- Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Shoplifting and other theft crimes
- Vandalism and other property damage crimes
- Assault and other violent crimes
- Drug possession and trafficking
Kids who habitually refuse to submit to the reasonable control of their parents, teachers, or guardians are not classified as juvenile delinquents. Instead, they are known as “unruly children” – as detailed in section 2151.022 of the Ohio Revised Code.
The state of Ohio typically gives this designation to kids who:
- Are habitually truant from school, or
- Behave in a manner that is likely to endanger their health or the health of those around them
The Ohio juvenile justice attorneys here at Suhre & Associates, LLC, have been fighting on behalf of minors for many years. If your son or daughter is in danger of being classified as a juvenile delinquent or unruly child, please do not hesitate to reach out to us. We would love to arrange a meeting at our Cincinnati law office to learn more about their situation.
Where Are Juvenile Crimes Cases Tried?
In the state of Ohio, juvenile crimes are typically tried in one of the following three places:
- Juvenile court
- Teen court
- Adult court
The court that handles a given case is generally determined by the age and criminal history of the alleged offender as well as the severity of their offense:
In Ohio, the vast majority of criminal cases involving offenders who are under the age of 18 are handled in juvenile court. These courts are required to hold adjudicatory hearings for any alleged minor offenders within 72 hours of their arrest.
In many ways, juvenile court is quite similar to adult court. Both systems allow the defendant to be represented by an attorney or public defender and present witnesses and other evidence in their defense.
There is one key difference between juvenile court and adult court, however. Since juvenile offenders do not have the same constitutional protections as adult offenders, they are not entitled to argue their case in front of a jury. Instead, their case is solely adjudicated by a judge.
Teen Court is an intervention program administered by the state of Ohio to keep low-level first-time offenders out of the juvenile justice system. It is community-based, with the trials being run and adjudicated by other teens.
To qualify for this program an alleged offender must generally:
- Be between the ages of 11 and 17
- Be accused of a misdemeanor crime
- Be a first-time offender
- Admit that they committed the crime
- Commit to a 5-week diversion program
- Have their parent or guardian consent to their participation in the diversion program
As part of their 5-week diversion program, kids who are tried in Teen Court usually have to:
- Apologize to the victim or victims of their crime
- Write a lengthy essay
- Perform community service
- Attend counseling
- Serve as a juror on another Teen Court case
Once the child has completed this program, they can generally continue their life without a criminal record.
Under certain circumstances, juvenile cases can sometimes be moved to adult court. This transfer is mandatory in the following situations:
- The alleged offender is 16 or 17, and they are accused of committing a category 1 crime such as murder or attempted murder.
- The alleged offender is 16 or 17, and they are accused of committing a category 2 crime such as rape, manslaughter, or aggravated burglary while carrying a firearm.
- The alleged offender is 14 or 15 with a prior criminal history, and they are accused of committing a category 1 crime such as murder or attempted murder.
Judges in Ohio also have the discretion to move juvenile cases to adult court if the alleged offender is at least 14 years old and is charged with a felony. Before doing so, however, they typically consider factors such as:
- Whether or not the alleged offender is part of a gang
- Whether or not the victim suffered physical harm or psychological damage
- Whether or not the crime was committed because of the victim’s race, gender, religion, or sexual orientation
- Whether or not the alleged offender has a prior criminal history
- How the transfer is likely to impact the alleged offender’s mental and emotional state
Do you need an experienced criminal defense attorney in Cincinnati, Ohio, to represent your child in juvenile, teen, or adult court? Then please contact the team here at Suhre & Associates, LLC, as soon as possible. We are ready, willing, and able to protect your child’s future.
Consequences of Juvenile Criminal Convictions in Ohio
The penalties faced by minors who are convicted of crimes in the state of Ohio are largely determined by factors such as:
- The severity of their crime
- The court in which they are tried
- Their previous criminal history
However, a brief list of some of the most common punishments handed down to young offenders would include:
- Confinement in a juvenile detention center
- House arrest
- Mandatory curfew
- Suspension of driver’s license
- Mandatory counseling
- Mandatory school attendance
If your child is facing juvenile criminal charges and you would like to have a Suhre & Associates, LLC, attorney help them battle to avoid the consequences outlined above, all you need to do is pick up the phone, give us a call, and set up a free consultation at our Cincinnati law office.
A Cincinnati Juvenile Crimes Lawyer You Can Count On
The team here at Suhre & Associates, LLC, has been providing the children of Hamilton County and the Greater Cincinnati area with high-quality legal services for many years. During that time, we have achieved countless favorable results for our valued clients. If you would like to have us help your child, simply send us a message online to arrange an initial consultation with a member of our team.