Serving Fort Myers, Lee County and the surrounding areas in Florida
Accusations of felonies, acts of vandalism, and sex offenses can have long-lasting consequences on your kid's future. In the state of Florida, juveniles can be arrested, charged, and incarcerated the same way as an adult.
With such high stakes on your child's future, hiring a juvenile defense attorney from The Law Office of Christopher Whitney can help you protect your child's legal rights.
As part of the criminal practice of the Law Offices of Christopher Whitney we handle a great many cases involving juveniles. Defending juvenile delinquency in Florida is truly a sub-specialization of criminal law due to the many intricacies involved in a juvenile case, and the potential for real harm done to their future. Florida is one of the states which have laws enabling juveniles to be tried as adults. Many of us in the profession do not agree with this, but it is unfortunately the law here, which is why it is so important to act quickly and decisively in juvenile cases. However, in general the goal of the juvenile courts is rehabilitation over punishment and for this reason we have different procedures and actions we can take on your child’s behalf.
If your child has been arrested, give me a call I want to help.
In most juvenile cases, the child is taken to the Juvenile Assessment Center (JAC) where counselors do an evaluation of the child that is sent with him or her to the judge where the judge makes the final decision about whether to release him or her to his parents’ custody or to be sent to the juvenile center until trial. A good attorney will be able to make an argument for a home stay during the hearings and trial period, and in most cases this is advisable. However, there are times when parents believe the child may need to be separated from a group of people whose influence is deleterious, and when this is the case all parties will work together to create the safest, most agreeable scenario that will benefit the child’s rehabilitation.
However, if there is a situation where the child is a repeat offender or perhaps even accused of a violent crime, the state will file directly with adult court. Obviously, this is not ideal and the attorney will want to see this in juvenile court instead. There are many defenses that can be made, and the child still retains his rights as an American during this period.
I have provided legal counsel and representation to family’s just like yours; families who are hurting and desperate to rebuild a more prosperous and secure future for their child. Everyone deserves a second chance and being able to provide a way out of danger and a life of circular incarceration requires stopping it before it truly gets started.