Juvenile Offenses Attorney in Winchester, VA
Under 18 & Arrested? Call Our Firm for Advocates You Can Trust!
Being arrested for a crime as a minor can be a frightening experience, but it doesn’t have to be a devastating one. At Amable Law, our desire is to help you through this process with your best interests as our goal. We make sure to communicate openly, honestly, and promptly with our clients through multiple channels of correspondence such as email, phone, and even skype, if necessary.
What to Do Upon Arrest
Often, police may try and manipulate you into saying something incriminating during the beginning parts of the arrests, so make sure to stay smart and stay quiet. You do not have to give any information to the police.
If arrested for a juvenile offense, make sure to keep the following in mind:
- Invoke your right to keep silent and do not discuss your case with anyone except to a lawyer or your parents/guardian
- Request your right to speak to an attorney
- Be compliant with the officer’s requests
- Avoid running away or resisting arrest
- Express your desire to call your parents or guardians
If you or a loved one have been arrested for a crime as a minor (under 18), then it is vital that you contact an experienced and reliable juvenile offenses attorney in Winchester to guide you through this process. Call us at (540) 739-2001.
The Difference of Juvenile vs. Adult Due Process
Under Virginia law, the juvenile system is designed to lean towards the correction of the minor and prevention of future illegal acts. This separation of juvenile and adult criminal systems has several significant and practical implications. For example, in the adult justice system, every court trial is open to the public, whereas the juvenile system strives to maintain the privacy of the minor.
Arresting a Minor in Virginia
Arresting a juvenile offender in Virginia is almost the same as with adults. A minor is guaranteed the right to hear the basis of their arrest, the right to stay silent, and the right to an attorney. Furthermore, as with adults, police cannot simply search a minor without a warrant or probable cause of criminal activity.
However, there are some key differences in the police procedures for the arrest of a juvenile. For example, if the policeman is a school resource officer, he may only need reasonable suspicion of criminal activity on a school campus, whereas, with an adult in a normal circumstance, he would need probable cause. Additionally, in the arrest of a juvenile, the officer may decide to issue a ticket that requires the juvenile to come into court at a later time and then release him or her to the parents or guardians, instead of driving the minor “downtown” into custody. If, however, the child is taken into custody, he or she will not be kept in an adult facility but in a juvenile facility, except in cases of more serious felonies or offenses.
Court Hearings for Juvenile Offenders
If the minor has been detained, he or she will have an adjudicatory hearing before a judge who will determine whether to continue with the case or to set the juvenile free. At this point, the juvenile may be represented by either a guardian ad litem or a Virginia criminal defense attorney. If the judge decides to continue with the proceedings, a disposition decision will take place at a later hearing, where the judge will find out information regarding the minor’s background and history to aid in the determining of a sentence.
Secure the Services of Our Winchester Defense Lawyer
At Amable Law, we are dedicated to building a professional relationship with clients like you that is founded on trust and integrity. We do this by taking the time to communicate with you and making sure that we understand your side of the story in detail. When you have our firm as your representation, rest assured that we are with you every step of the way, ready to go above and beyond to protect your rights and your future.
Call our highly-qualified juvenile offenses attorneys in Winchester to secure your child’s case at (540) 739-2001.