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Understanding the California Juvenile Court Process

Juvenile cases are different than criminal defense cases involving adults. Cases involving children or young adults are heard by a judge in Juvenile Court, without the presence of a jury. The Juvenile Court process itself is geared more toward the rehabilitation of the juvenile, rather than their incarceration. There are instances, however, where the prosecutor or judge could escalate matters and push to have the juvenile tried as an adult in a regular courtroom. This would mean they would be facing the same penalties and fines as an adult if convicted.

That is why if you are facing charges related to a juvenile crime, it is vital to have a skilled attorney from our firm representing you. Because our firm has extensive criminal law experience, and our managing attorney worked as a Deputy District Attorney, we can offer clients a unique insight into the juvenile court process. We possess an intricate understanding of how these types of cases are tried and as a result, we know what legal strategies to employ on your behalf.

Juvenile Cases Tried as Adults

There are options available to the arresting officer and the court to not send the juvenile to trial, depending on the juvenile’s record and the seriousness of the crime. However, juveniles are increasingly being tried as adults for serious crimes. For minor offenses, the officer may still require the juvenile to see a judge, who then decides if the case will go to trial or not.

The judge considers many factors and may lecture the juvenile, order counseling, or mandate community service if the crime is not serious. However, since the matter is up to the judge, legal representation is essential, as there are many other factors to take into account. For example, the judge will review the juvenile’s attitude. Without someone to represent them, a minor could end up in a much more serious situation that would be out of proportion to their alleged wrong.

Committed, Dedicated & Persistent

Okabe & Haushalter is committed to providing every client with the excellent service and aggressive defense they deserve. As a result of our successful representation in numerous high-profile cases involving celebrities, CEOs, medical professionals, and more, we are known as one of the premier criminal defense firms in the state. We are also nationally recognized legal analysts for CNN, Headline News, and other local stations. Whether a client is a celebrity or the kid next door, their case is treated with the utmost professionalism, attention to detail, and adherence to ethical standards. We are dedicated to protecting our clients’ rights.