If your son or daughter is under the age of 18 and has been charged with a criminal offense in South Florida, experienced juvenile defense attorney Bryan Raymond is available to assist you and your child in their moment of need. Bryan is experienced in the representation of juvenile defendants and knows the different procedures and nuances of representing juveniles who are charged as adults in Florida or who are instead facing criminal charges in the juvenile justice system. Because there is an entirely different statutory and procedural scheme that applies to the representation of juveniles in Florida (whether charged as adults or not), it is important to hire a criminal defense attorney experienced in the representation of juvenile defendants when your minor son or daughter is charged with a crime in Florida. Bryan Raymond can provide that experienced, aggressive representation needed when your son or daughter’s very future is at stake.
Florida’s Juvenile Justice System
Criminal cases for minors under the age of 18 in Florida who are suspected of having committed a crime are first referred to the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice for evaluation and punishment determination. This is in contrast to the process for criminal defendants over the age of 18, in which a person charged with having committed a crime is arrested. Once a juvenile has been referred to the Department for Juvenile Justice, the Department makes recommendations to the State Attorney and the Court regarding the next steps.
The first step is usually detention screening using a method of risk assessment. In many cases, a child may be ordered to do a home detention program under the supervision of a parent or guardian. Juveniles considered a danger to public safety might be detained in a short-term detention program in a secure detention center before appearing before the court. Another option for youth charged with minor crimes is diversion, which involves programs that are alternatives to the juvenile justice system such as community service. Another possible sanction for a juvenile offender is probation, where the youth must fulfill conditions such as community service, restitution and meeting regularly with a juvenile probation officer. The punishment in Florida’s juvenile criminal court system for crimes committed depends on the juvenile’s age, seriousness of the crime, and other factors.
Charging Juveniles in Adult Criminal Court in Florida
In certain circumstances, a juvenile in Florida may also be tried as an adult. This puts the juvenile defendant at a serious disadvantage, because the penalties in traditional adult criminal court are typically far more serious than those imposed in juvenile court. For this reason, it is critical to make every effort to keep a juvenile from being charged and tried in adult court. Under Florida law, if a juvenile is 14 years or older, the State Attorney is permitted to ask the Court to adjudicate a juvenile in adult criminal court.
The Importance of Hiring a Criminal Defense Attorney With Experience in Defending Juveniles
Not all criminal defense attorneys have experience representing juveniles’ accused of crimes in Florida. Although anyone under the age of 18 can be charged with the same crimes as a criminal defendant over the age of 18, minors have special rights that normal criminal defendants over the age of 18 do not. Therefore, it is imperative that whomever you choose to represent your child has an intimate understanding of the statutes, procedures and laws that apply to juvenile criminal defendants in Florida. When your child’s future is on the line, you can trust experienced West Palm Beach juvenile criminal defense attorney Bryan Raymond to fight hard to protect your child’s freedom. Bryan aggressively defends all of his clients, particularly those whose future is the most at stake – his juvenile clients.
Bryan’s Areas of Practice in Representing Juvenile Defendants
Experienced West Palm Beach juvenile criminal defense attorney Bryan Raymond has the experience necessary to defend your son or daughter of they in connection with the following types of criminal charges:
- Probation Violations
- Drug Offenses
- Alcohol Offenses
- Burglary, Theft or Larceny
- Domestic Violence or Other Crimes of Violence
- Sex Offenses
- Traffic Crimes