New Jersey Juvenile Crimes Guide
Having your child be arrested for any charge is a nightmare. While you may be worried sick, you are probably already seeking ways to help your child even if they may have severely disappointed you. New Jersey juvenile crimes attorney Carl Spector wants to safeguard your child’s future as much as you do. This is not something to take lightly or move slowly with. Call our office today to set up a free consultation so we can start working to protect your child’s future.
Experienced Juvenile Crimes Attorney with Over 30 Years of Experience Protecting the Rights of Youthful Offenders
If you’re the parent of a child who is facing a juvenile crime charge in New Jersey, obtaining experienced legal representation is absolutely imperative to ensure that your child’s future is protected. While penalties for minors convicted of crimes are often less harsh, depending on the child’s age, and severity of the crime, the penalties could be severe, and have life-long consequences that can follow them well into their future when applying for jobs, college, or the military.
Oftentimes, children are subjected to peer pressure and end up making bad decisions that they may not have made had they been alone. Regardless of this fact, the goal of the prosecutor is to seek a conviction. Depending on the severity of the crime, the prosecution may even seek to have your child tried as an adult. Attorney Carl Spector works to ensure that doesn’t happen, and provides the competent, aggressive, and compassionate legal guidance you need during these trying times.
Dedicated New Jersey juvenile criminal lawyer Carl Spector is highly qualified in all criminal law matters, including those involving juveniles and has over three decades of experience protecting the rights of those accused of crimes in New Jersey. Attorney Carl Spector understands the importance of keeping your child’s case out of the adult court system. He will use his experience to aggressively fight to minimize the potential serious consequences that can come with a juvenile crime conviction. Don’t let your child pay for a mistake for the rest of their life. Get experienced counsel in your corner.
Why Kids Get into Trouble
Oftentimes, these children were subjected to peer pressure which made them do things they wouldn’t normally do. In New Jersey, to search and arrest a minor, the police have to have probable cause, or reason to believe a crime has been committed. If your child is arrested, you should remain calm, and seek professional help from a dedicated New Jersey juvenile criminal lawyer who has experience handling cases involving juvenile clients.
The court will try to put your child on the right path, and in my experience, punishment is not always the correct path. The consequences and penalties of a juvenile crime conviction can often follow your child well into their future, and hinder their ability to seek employment, apply for schools, and more.
While the penalties for juvenile crimes are often less severe, depending on the severity of the crime, there can be serious consequences that could follow your child well into their future. Our goal is to aggressively fight to minimize any potential serious consequences, and ensure your child’s record remains clean.
Juvenile crimes carry a broad range of penalties depending on the child’s age, and severity of the crime they are accused of. Detention for juvenile crimes is a last resort, the courts prefer to educate the child and change their behavior in hopes of putting them on the right path. Penalties can include writing an essay to a judge or victim, probation, but can be as severe as sending them to a juvenile detention center.
How Theft Crimes Are Handled
New Jersey takes theft crimes very seriously, and often aggressively pursues those charged with these types of offenses. If your child is charged with juvenile theft, it is crucial to contact an experienced criminal defense attorney who can help your child avoid the potentially serious, and life-changing consequences associated with theft convictions.
If you have been charged with juvenile theft in New Jersey, this is what you can expect:
- If the value of the theft is minimal, the charge could be handled at the police level or a committee meeting.
- If it proceeds it will be handled in the superior court.
- If it is a serious theft charge, the child could even be charged as an adult.
If your child is arrested for juvenile theft, contact the Law Office of Carl Spector as soon as possible for dedicated representation. With over 30 years of experience as both a prosecutor and criminal defense attorney, he offers a unique perspective on how both sides think, and how to best approach each aspect of the case.
Caught in Possession of a Fake ID and DUI
We’ve all been there. The allure of purchasing and drinking alcohol is common for underage teens in New Jersey, however despite most people considering this a harmless crime, being caught in possession of a fake ID can have severe penalties that can have a serious impact on your future. These charges can end up negatively impacting your college applications, job opportunities, or applications for military service.
Many times the charges that come with being caught in possession of a fake ID are coupled with other crimes like drinking or possessing alcohol under age. False identification is an indictable offense in New Jersey, which is why I always recommend seeking the counsel of an experienced criminal defense attorney to help you minimize the impact these charges can have on your life.
If your child is arrested for an underage DUI, the penalties can be serious and life-changing. That’s why it is crucial to have strong, aggressive legal defense in your corner to help minimize the potential serious consequences your child is facing. Attorney Carl Spector has over 30 years of experience safeguarding juveniles from underage drinking and driving charges.
Underage drinking and driving is not taken lightly in New Jersey. The penalties for underage DUI charges include:
- If you are under 21 and blow a BAC of .01-.07 you will be charged with underage DWI.
- If someone under 21 blows a BAC of .08 or more, then they will be treated as an adult.
Frequently Asked Juvenile Crimes Questions
What Should You Do if Your Child is Arrested for a Crime?
If your child is charged with a crime in the state of New Jersey, you should seek an attorney who has handled cases like this before. I have handled juvenile matters in the superior court and the family court and I have experience. One of the things you need to know is that the court, in most instances, is trying to look out for the best interest of the child, and while punishment might be an element of the best interest of that child, the court is not trying to put the child on the wrong path, they’re actually trying to correct that behavior. As a parent myself, I have seen children making poor judgments, but that does not have to define the rest of their life.
What Are the Penalties for Juvenile Crimes?
In New Jersey, a juvenile offense has a broad range of penalties. Whenever juveniles involved in an alleged criminal act, the courts ordinarily try to put themselves in a position where they want to benefit the child in the long run. Juvenile detention is usually a last resort, usually for very serious charges or for people who have had many, many different offenses and just haven’t been able to rectify their aberrant behavior.
The penalties can range anything from writing an essay to a judge or to a victim, all the way up to juvenile detention. Very often, if it’s a serious enough charge but detention is not required or recommended, a period of adjustment, which is kind of like being on probation where a juvenile might have to attend some classes or some therapy and then prove to the court that they are not aberrant any longer and can handle the rigors of growing up.
What Are the Penalties for Underaged DWI?
If an individual who is under the age of 21 has been charged with a DWI or a DUI, driving under the influence in the state of New Jersey, that means that their blood-alcohol content was below a .08. There’s a zero tolerance in the state of New Jersey for DUIs for somebody who’s underage: .01 through .07 are all DUIs. The good news is if that individual did blow anything below a .08, they will not have a conviction even if they plead guilty to that charge or are found guilty to that charge, because an underage DWI does not count for the future.
There are ways for handling these cases where the consequences are either eliminated or mitigated. I’ve handled many of these cases and I’d be happy to talk to you about yours.
What Happens If My Child’s Caught Using a Fake ID?
In the state of New Jersey, if you’re charged with using a fake ID, very often I’ve seen them coupled with other charges. Very often they’re either charged in a bar for using the fake ID, so it’s underaged possession of alcohol, very often it’s for some other charge itself and the police find a fake ID. Bear in mind that having a false ID in your possession is an indictable offense and can result in some serious, serious consequences.
What Happens If My Child’s Charged with Shoplifting?
In New Jersey, if you’re charged with shoplifting, your case, more than likely, depending on the value of the property, either be prosecuted in the municipal court in a local town or in the superior court at the county level. Very often, cases that are of higher value will be prosecuted at the county level. However, very often cases that are of higher value will be prosecuted at the county level. However, very often the county prosecutor will reduce those charged to a disorderly persons offense and then you’ll be prosecuted at the municipal level.
What you should know is that most prosecutors will not plea bargain shoplifting cases, and you’ll need an experienced attorney to navigate through a shoplifting case. I’ve literally handled hundreds if not thousands of shoplifting cases in my thirty year career. Please give me a call.
What Happens If My Child’s Charged with Joyriding?
In the state of New Jersey, if an individual, usually underaged individual, is driving a motor vehicle – some people would call it joy riding, that’s what they called it when I was a kid – they can be charged with an indictable offense. Very often, the state will bring the charges, and if this is a typical joyriding incident where the car belonged to a parent, the parent’s input might have some significant persuasion on the prosecutor to let the charges be reduced. But being charged with unlawful use of a motor vehicle in New Jersey is a serious offense.
What If My Child Fails to Appear in Municipal Court?
If you fail to appear in court on a New Jersey municipal court traffic matter, ordinarily the court will send out a second notice. That notice will inform you that if you then fail to appear for that notice, a warrant issue or a bail will be set, and a notice will then be sent down to the Department of Motor Vehicles. You won’t even realize it, but that will result in your driving license being suspended. If you fail to appear in court on a criminal matter, a warrant will issue by the judge and you will need to report to court immediately. If any of those situations are your situation, notify me immediately and we’ll have these warrants vacated.
What If My Child Forgot to Pay for an Item While Shopping?
I’ve seen hundreds of shoplifting cases in the state of New Jersey, maybe thousands, and every once and awhile you do come across a case where there’s an error made by the customer. Very often that’s not the case. Very often there’s some intent involved. In order for you to be successfully prosecuted, the judge would have to be convinced that you had an intent to deprive the store owner here of that property, so if you went through the line and failed to pay for one item unintentionally, if would be very difficult for a prosecutor to prove that you had the intent to deprive the owner of that particular item.
Know full well that shoplifting cases are vigorously prosecuted in the state of New Jersey and that you need an attorney that’s as well versed as I am. Give me a call.
What If My Child’s Arrested for Theft?
In New Jersey, if a juvenile is charged with a theft, there are different layers or different categories that that individual can be charged with. That will bring them to different courts. If it’s a very minimal, or de minimis type of defense, it might just be handled at the local police level; at a forum or a committee meeting. Higher than that, it can go to the superior court to the family division where cases are being handled which are being prosecuted by the county prosecutors. On some of those levels, even the lowest of levels, people can handle those matters with minimal intrusion into their life.
On the higher side, or the more serious theft charges, there is a prosecutor, there is a judge, and the juvenile is not only entitled to an attorney, but probably should have an attorney navigate that type of case because there are much more serious consequences at that level. Of course, if it’s very, very, very serious charge, a county prosecutor can try to elect to bring that charge into the superior court and charge that person as an adult.
What Happens If My Child’s Caught Drinking at a Bar Under 21 Years Old?
If an underage individual is in a bar and they’ve been served alcohol, they’ll be charged with either a disorderly person’s offense or an indictable offense. Very often, charges like that are coupled with a false identification, which is an indictable offense. Very often, those cases go to the county prosecutor and the county prosecutor will determine whether or not that case will be prosecuted at the superior court level as an indictable offense or it will be determined to a municipal court or in certain circumstances into the family court depending on the severity of the charge.
If you or a loved one has been accused of a juvenile crime in New Jersey, contact experienced New Jersey juvenile criminal lawyer Carl Spector for a free confidential consultation. Let his experience work for you!