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We Defend Minors

Cleveland Juvenile Crime Attorneys

Do I Need a Defense Lawyer for My Child's Juvenile Case?

Several members of our team are former prosecutors-and we have children ourselves. If our children ever faced charges in juvenile court, we would absolutely hire a lawyer to defend our children. Juvenile charges can change your child's life. Often, these charges are brought by inexperienced prosecutors who are just being taught, for the first time, how to prosecute cases. That's right. In the vast majority of cases, your child has been charged by a prosecutor who has virtually no experience in the criminal justice system. What does this mean? It means that you need to fight, and fight aggressively, to protect your child's freedom and their future.

  • While some of these cases are sealed when they turn 21, there are two things to consider:
  • Most will be doing something before they turn 21 be it college, trade school, etc.
  • Many of these cases are not sealed once the child turns 21

We can help. Call us at (440) 709-8088.

Ask to speak to us about the specifics of your child's situation. The call is confidential and has no obligation. If I agree to take your case on my team of former prosecutors and I will go to work fighting for you right away.

How Are Juvenile Crimes Different?

  • The juvenile justice system is one of the most complicated, misunderstood systems around. Juveniles are not given the same rights as adults, so the risk is greater.
  • As an example of juveniles not having the same right, we look at the fact that juveniles do not have an automatic right to a trial by jury. This means that almost all cases have to be tried to a single judge.
  • Also, in juvenile cases there is no right to a bond or bail. A juvenile is either held in the detention center while their case is pending, released on home detention, or released to their parents. This, coupled with the fact that there is no right to a speedy trial for a juvenile, could mean that the child could sit in detention for years before their case is even heard in the courtroom.
  • Juvenile sentencing for crimes is different as well. If a juvenile is convicted of a felony and shipped to prison, they can stay for anywhere from 6 months until they turn 21, it is up to the department of corrections. In other words, a juvenile could receive a sentence resulting in five plus years in prison where an adult would at most serve 1 year. These are reasons why an attorney is needed.

As former prosecutors, we can tell you just how important it is to find a respectable, honest Cleveland defense lawyer to represent your child if they have been charged with any crime. Juveniles are treated differently, by law, than adults-and it can often lead to some quite shocking results. These are significant rights adults enjoy that juveniles do not-another reason why an experienced attorney is required.

What Do I Do If My Child Was Charged with a Felony?

As Cleveland parents, we all care deeply out the health and welfare of our children. Few things can be as horrifying for a parent than having their child charged with a felony. If your child has been charged with a felony, you need to immediately obtain experienced criminal representation for them. If your child is an adult, even though we do not really consider our 18 year olds to be adults, the need is even more pressing.

In the juvenile justice system, a child charged with a felony faces a unique set of challenges that need to be overcome by their attorneys. A child can end up in juvenile detention until their 21st birthday on certain charges. On top of that, a finding of delinquency (the adult equivalent of guilty) can stick with them for the rest of their life-through colleges, employment, etc. It is important that the matter is handled by a skilled attorney.

Why Was My Child Charged with a DUI?

In Ohio, there are numerous different charges relating to driving while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs. One such charge for adults is taking a breath test and having a result of 0.08 or over. This is what is referred to as a per se limit. However, for someone who is underage (meaning they are under the legal drinking age of 21), the per se limit is much lower. Someone who is under the age of 21 can be charged with a criminal offense if they take a breath test and have a result of 0.02 or higher. So, your child may be charged with a DUI for having a breath test result over the per se limit-even if their result was under 0.08. The penalties for an underage DUI can be severe, but an experienced DUI defense attorney can help you fight them.

Advice on Handling Juvenile Charges & Arrests

We pride ourselves on how accessible we are to our clients and to our clients' families. As former prosecutors, we understand that people can be arrested at any hour of the day or night.

  • If your child has been arrested or is being accused of a crime, you should take the following steps:
  • Immediately consult with a criminal attorney. Do not let your child, if a minor, speak with the police until after you have had the opportunity to speak to someone who practices in this area. Speaking with the police will not help. The police want to investigate a crime and they believe your child participated-nothing your child says will help. As former prosecutors, we understand the techniques the police use in conducting an investigation. It is important to call us if your child has been arrested-even if this is an adult child.
  • Invoke your right to remain silent. We all have this right: the right to remain silent. It is second in importance only to the right to hire an attorney to aggressively fight to defend you. The police might try to make you feel guilty about exercising your right to remain silent. They might say that if you are innocent that you should talk to them. The police might yell and scream at you, threaten you with prison if you do not cooperate. These are all bullying tactics used to get a confession that may, or may not, be legitimate.

Call us for a pressure-free, obligation-free consultation. We are available 24/7/365. If you find yourself facing a situation where your child has been charged in Cleveland, call (440) 709-8088!

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When your freedom is on the line, you need someone who can make a difference in your case. See how the experience of the attorneys at Patituce & Associates can help.

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