Juvenile Criminal Offenses
Juvenile Criminal Lawyer in Freehold NJ
If you or your child has been arrested and charged with a criminal offense in New Jersey the case will be handled by the County prosecutor’s office in the county where the juvenile resides. That is just one of the many distinctions between the Juvenile Criminal Justice System and the Adult Criminal Justice system in New Jersey. Although the overall “goal” of the juvenile criminal justice system is to rehabilitate as opposed to punish, that “goal” will change if the charges and/or the juvenile’s criminal history is significant enough. In fact, if the alleged crime is serious enough and the juvenile’s record is bad enough, the County prosecutor’s office could seek to petition the Court to waive the juvenile up to and allow them to be prosecuted in the Superior Court, Criminal Division. If the Judge is to grant the waiver, that means that the juvenile will be subject to the same penalties that an adult would be. For more information when the prosecution can waive a juvenile up to adult court in Monmouth County, please click the link.
How we can Help with Juvenile Criminal Charges in NJ
If you or a loved one has been charged with a juvenile criminal offense and are scheduled to appear in the Monmouth County Superior Courthouse to answer those charges, Proetta & Oliver can help. Our Monmouth County Juvenile defense attorneys have been representing clients charged with criminal offenses in towns throughout the county, including towns like Middletown, Hazlet, Howell, Red Bank, Tinton Falls, Eatontown, Freehold, Little Silver, Rumson and Belmar for over a decade now. We represent juveniles charged with various criminal offenses ranging from underage drinking, shoplifting and possession of marijuana under 50 grams too carjacking, burglary and aggravated assault. If you would like to come into our office to sit down and discuss your options, please feel free to contact us directly at (732) 858.6959. Our attorneys have a tremendous amount of first hand experience as to how the juvenile criminal justice system works in New Jersey and more specifically, in Monmouth County. One of the attorneys at Proetta & Oliver is available immediately for a free consultation at 732.858.6959.
Monmouth County NJ Juvenile Criminal Defense Attorney
- Possession of a Controlled Dangerous Substance
- Distributing a Controlled Dangerous Substance
- Criminal Mischief
- Underage Possession of Alcohol
Can My Child go to Jail if they are under 18 Years Old in NJ?
Yes, New Jersey has several Juvenile Detention Centers throughout the State. The main detention center, which is known as New Jersey Training School, is located in Monroe Township, which is in Middlesex County. Although the potential exposure a juvenile faces if convicted of a crime pales in comparison to that of what an adult would have to serve, the exposure can be absolutely devastating. Here is a breakdown of the potential sentences a juvenile could face:
Adult Criminal Justice System
- Murder – Life
- 1st Degree Crime – 10 – 20 Years
- 2nd Degree Crime – 5 – 10 Years
- 3rd Degree Crime – 3 – 5 Years
- 4th Degree Crime – Up to 18 Months
- Disorderly Person Offense – Up to 6 Months
- Petty Disorderly Persons Offense – Up to 90 Days
Juvenile Criminal Justice System
- Murder – Up to 20 Years
- 1st Degree Crime – Up to 4 Years
- 2nd Degree Crime – Up to 3 Years
- 3rd Degree Crime – Up to 2 Years
- 4th Degree Crime – Up to 1 Year
- Disorderly Person Offense – Up to 6 Months
- Petty Disorderly Persons Offense – Discretionary
How does the Judge Decide what Sentence to Impose on a Juvenile in NJ?
Besides the underlying facts of the case and the juveniles criminal history, a Judge must balance the following factors when determining what an appropriate sentence:
- Nature and circumstances of the offense;
- Extent of the damage or injury caused by the offense;
- Potential threat that the juvenile poses to the public safety;
- Impact of the offense on the victim(s) and the community at large;
- Juvenile’s age, previous criminal record, and if any social services have been received;
- Juvenile’s physical, psychological, social, academic, and developmental needs;
- Whether the disposition supports family strength and unity, as well as the juvenile’s well-being and physical safety;
- Whether the disposition provides for reasonable participation by the juvenile’s parent or guardian; and
- Any other relevant parts of the juvenile’s history.
Lookin to Consult with a Juvenile Criminal Defense Lawyer in Middletown NJ
As touched upon above, it is important to remember that although the underlying “charges” a juvenile may be facing are the same as he or she would if they were an adult, the system is different. Therefore, it is imperative that you hire an experienced juvenile criminal defense lawyer. There are a ton of little nuances between the juvenile criminal justice and the adult criminal justice system. Furthermore, unlike the adult criminal justice system, attorneys are required in the juvenile criminal justice system. If you would like to schedule are free initial consultation today please contact our Middletown office directly at (732)858.6959. We can discuss the specific facts of your case and advise you on how we can be of assistance. Our attorneys serve all of Monmouth County, including towns like Holmdel, Matawan, Aberdeen, Long Branch, Asbury Park, Ocean Township, West Long Branch and Neptune. We demand that our all our attorneys be hands on with their clients and make sure that they are fully informed of everything that is going on with their case. We fully understands that when a child has been charged with a criminal offense it can be extremely nerve wracking for the parents. A criminal conviction for a juvenile could drastically affect their future. It could prevent them from obtaining gainful employment, being accepted into college and even obtaining certain professional licenses in life. So please do not let a simple adolescent mistake ruin their future going forward. We are located at 18 Kings Highway, directly across the street from the Middletown Municipal Court.