Phoenix Juvenile Crimes Lawyer

Minors who commit crimes in Arizona are subject to prosecution in juvenile court. A child who is convicted of a crime in juvenile court may face penalties including intensive probation, fines and restitution, performing community service, or even serving time in a juvenile correction facility. If your child is facing juvenile criminal charges, contact a qualified Phoenix juvenile crimes lawyer at AZ Defenders right away. We will work hard to lessen the penalties your child is facing.

Why Choose AZ Defenders for Your Juvenile Crime Charge?

  • If your child is in trouble with the law, you want the best criminal defense available. Our Phoenix juvenile attorneys are well-respected and established in the legal community. Founding attorney Craig Rosenstein is on the Board of Directors of the Arizona Justice Project.
  • You can rely on our Phoenix criminal defense attorneys to do everything within our power to secure the best possible outcome for your child.
  • We understand what you are going through and offer dedicated, personalized service.

Phoenix Juvenile Lawyer

Arizona Law Concerning Juvenile Offenders

State law concerning juvenile offenders is contained in Arizona Revised Statutes, Title 8, Chapter 3. This statute includes seven articles addressing juvenile offenders, including:

  • General Procedures for Delinquency and Incorrigibility Proceedings
  • Delinquency and Alcohol Offense Complaints and Hearings
  • Disposition and Commitment
  • Juvenile Intensive Probation
  • Interstate Compact for Juveniles
  • Educational Rehabilitation
  • Victim’s Rights for Juvenile Offenses

For more information regarding what Arizona law says regarding juvenile offenders, speak with a knowledgeable Phoenix juvenile attorney at AZ Defenders.

What are Considered Juvenile Crimes?

Juvenile crimes are criminal offenses committed by an individual who is under the age of 18 (or the age of majority in a state). These crimes are treated differently than adult offenses in Arizona. In general, the juvenile justice system is meant to reform and rehabilitate minors to prevent recidivism, or subsequent offenses being committed in the future, rather than punish them. This means the legal process looks very different. Under Arizona Revised Statutes Section 8-201:

  • “Child,” “youth,” and “juvenile” mean an individual under the age of 18 years.
  • “Delinquent act” means an act committed by a juvenile that, if committed by an adult, would be a criminal or petty offense; a violation of Arizona law or the law of any other state in which the offense was committed; a violation of federal law; a violation of a law that can only be violated by a minor and has been designated a delinquent offense; or a violation of any ordinance of a city, county, or political subdivision of this state defining crime.
  • “Delinquent juvenile” is a minor child who is adjudicated to have committed a delinquent act.

There are many differences between the adult and juvenile justice systems in Arizona. For example, most juvenile criminal cases are decided by judges rather than juries. In addition, a juvenile’s records are generally sealed. This means they will not be visible to the general public. The main difference, however, is that a juvenile offense is considered an act of “delinquency” that the courts must correct rather than a typical criminal offense that must be punished.

Common Types of Juvenile Offenses

 At AZ Defenders, we understand how Arizona’s juvenile justice system works. We can represent young clients who have been accused of many different types of criminal offenses in Phoenix. Examples include: 

  • Petty theft
  • Shoplifting
  • Robbery
  • Arson 
  • Vandalism
  • Alcohol crimes
  • Underage driving under the influence
  • Drug crimes
  • Drug paraphernalia
  • Trespassing
  • Truancy
  • Assault
  • Sexual assault
  • Harassment
  • Violent crimes
  • Weapon crimes

No matter what type of charge your child is facing, we can craft a defense to protect his or her future as much as possible. We are experienced juvenile criminal defense lawyers here to protect your child’s rights and best interests.

When Can a Juvenile Be Tried as an Adult in Arizona?

Under Arizona Revised Statutes Section 13-501, a juvenile who has been accused of a criminal offense with a prior felony conviction can be tried as an adult.

A juvenile who was 15, 16, or 17 years of age at the time the alleged offense was committed shall be tried as an adult for any of the following offenses:

  • First-degree murder
  • Second-degree murder
  • Forcible sexual assault
  • Armed robbery
  • Any other violent felony offense
  • Any felony committed by a chronic felony offender
  • Any offense properly joined to an offense listed above

Except as provided above, a juvenile who was 14 years of age or older at the time the offense was allegedly committed may be tried as an adult for a:

  • Class one felony
  • Class two felony
  • Class three felony in violation of chapters 10 through 17 or chapter 19 of Title 13 (crimes in these chapters include homicide, assault, kidnapping, sexual offenses, criminal trespass and burglary, criminal damage to property, arson, and robbery)
  • Class three, four, five, or six felony involving a dangerous offense
  • Any felony offense committed by a chronic felony offender
  • Any offense that is properly joined to an offense listed above

To discuss whether or not your child might be tried as an adult after being arrested or accused of a crime in Arizona, request a free case consultation with one of our attorneys.

Penalties for Juvenile Offenses in Arizona

If a minor in Phoenix is found guilty of committing a delinquent act or juvenile crime, he or she could face a variety of penalties. The sentence imposed by a judge may be aimed at rehabilitation more than punishment, but it can still be significant. Common examples of penalties include:

  • Community service
  • Fines
  • Restitution or reparations
  • Diversion program
  • Mandatory counseling
  • Intensive probation
  • Detainment in a juvenile correctional facility

 In addition, the child will have to deal with the consequences of having a criminal record. If the minor is charged as an adult, he or she will face more severe potential penalties; for example, the juvenile may receive a sentence that includes time spent in a traditional jail.

Personalized Defense Strategies for Your Juvenile Crime Case

If your child gets arrested for an alleged criminal offense in Phoenix, it is important that your child does not confess any guilt or speak to the police alone. Minors are entitled to have a legal representative as well as a legal guardian present during police questioning. It is imperative to contact a criminal defense lawyer near you right away to start building your case. At AZ Defenders, we will customize your child’s defense strategy based on the circumstances. Possibilities may include: 

  • False accusation
  • Wrong defendant/alibi
  • No intent to commit a crime
  • Coercion or duress
  • Entrapment
  • Police misconduct
  • Insufficient evidence

Our phoenix criminal defense lawyers will do whatever we can to protect your child from being convicted of juvenile delinquency. If a criminal conviction cannot be avoided, we can negotiate with the prosecution to achieve a favorable plea agreement, such as reduced charges or penalties, especially if this is your child’s first offense. Our attorneys have the skills and resources to develop an effective defense on a minor’s behalf.

Schedule a Free Consultation With a Phoenix Juvenile Attorney Today

Our Phoenix juvenile crimes lawyers have a deep understanding of state laws governing juvenile crimes. Contact AZ Defenders as soon as possible if your minor child has been charged with a crime. We’re available 24/7.

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