Bryan Juvenile Crime Defense Lawyer

Juvenile crimes in Texas encompass a range of offenses committed by individuals younger than 18, often resulting from various factors such as peer pressure, family dynamics, or socioeconomic circumstances. From underage drinking and theft to vandalism and drug possession, these charges can have profound implications for a child's future. In the face of such challenges, the importance of retaining an experienced Bryan juvenile criminal defense lawyer cannot be overstated.

A criminal charge, even at a young age, can tarnish a juvenile's record and hinder their educational and employment opportunities down the line. Additionally, it can strain familial relationships and lead to emotional distress for both the child and their loved ones.

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Why Choose the Law Office of Shane Phelps for Your Bryan Juvenile Crime Defense Lawyer?

Team of Bryan Juvenile Crime Defense Attorneys at the Law Office of Shane Phelps

With the guidance of a knowledgeable attorney focusing on juvenile defense, families can navigate the complexities of the legal system and work toward mitigating the consequences of the charges. From advocating for alternative resolutions to protecting the child's rights throughout the legal process, a skilled lawyer can provide invaluable support.

Your lawyer will work to ensure that the juvenile receives fair treatment and the opportunity for rehabilitation rather than enduring the lifelong stigma of a criminal conviction.

At Shane Phelps Law, our Bryan juvenile criminal defense lawyers have the skill and decades of experience to help you. We care about you and your family and will do whatever we can to make sure your child does not have to live with the negative impacts of a criminal conviction. Call us today at 979-773-7028 for a free consultation and let us put our experience to work for you.

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Our Law Office in Bryan, Texas

The Law Office of Shane Phelps, P.C., is located at 400 N. Washington Avenue, Bryan, TX 77803. We are in the heart of Bryan, at the corner of E. 23rd Street. Contact us for a free consultation.

Types of Juvenile Crimes

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Common types of juvenile crimes in Bryan, Texas, include:

  • Underage Drinking: This involves minors consuming alcohol, possessing alcohol, or attempting to purchase alcohol illegally.
  • Theft: Juveniles may be charged with theft for stealing items from stores, vehicles, or other individuals.
  • Trespassing: This offense occurs when a minor unlawfully enters or remains on someone else's property without permission.
  • Robbery: Juvenile robbery involves the use of force, intimidation, or threat to steal property from another person.
  • Fighting: Altercations between juveniles, whether physical or verbal, can lead to charges of assault, battery, or disorderly conduct.
  • Drug Possession: Possession of illegal substances such as marijuana, cocaine, or prescription drugs without a valid prescription can result in juvenile drug charges.
  • Vandalism: Juveniles may face charges for intentionally damaging or defacing property belonging to others.
  • Burglary: This involves unlawfully entering a building or structure with the intent to commit theft, vandalism, or another crime.

These are just a few examples, and there are many other offenses that juveniles may be charged with in Texas. Parents and guardians need to seek legal representation promptly if their child is facing accusations of juvenile delinquency to protect their rights and future.

Juvenile Crime and the Texas Justice System

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In Texas, when a child reaches the age of 10 years old, they become accountable for offenses they commit through the Texas Juvenile Justice Department, governed by the Texas Family Code. Unlike the adult system, the juvenile justice system operates with a distinct philosophical emphasis and approach to punishment.

Rather than labeling juvenile offenders as "criminals," the system recognizes them as individuals who "engage in delinquent conduct" and who may be "in need of supervision." This framework is rooted in the belief that young individuals are still developing emotionally and mentally. They should be afforded opportunities for rehabilitation and redirection.

As such, the focus of the juvenile system is not solely punitive but also aims to address underlying issues and provide support for positive behavioral change.

When a child is involved in a juvenile offense, the handling of the case differs significantly from adult criminal proceedings. Instead of facing trial by jury for a verdict of guilty or not guilty, juvenile cases are typically heard by judges who determine the outcome based on the evidence presented.

Consequences for Juvenile Offenses

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For less serious offenses or first-time offenders, the consequences could include community service, probation, restitution to victims, or participation in diversion programs aimed at addressing underlying issues such as substance abuse or behavioral problems.

However, for more serious offenses or repeat offenders, the consequences can be more severe. These may include placement in juvenile detention facilities, such as the Texas Youth Commission, which serves as a correctional institution for juveniles.

In rare cases involving particularly egregious offenses or older juveniles, there is the possibility of being certified to stand trial as an adult. If convicted as an adult, the juvenile could face adult punishments, including incarceration in state prison.

Potential Long-Term Consequences of Juvenile Crime Convictions

A juvenile conviction can have profound and lasting consequences that extend far beyond the immediate legal penalties imposed by the court. One of the most significant long-term impacts is the potential hindrance to the juvenile's future opportunities, particularly in terms of employment and housing.

Employment

With a criminal record, even one acquired during adolescence, individuals often face significant challenges when seeking employment. Many employers conduct background checks as part of their hiring process, and a juvenile conviction may result in automatic disqualification or raise concerns about the applicant's reliability and trustworthiness.

Additionally, certain professions and occupations may have legal or regulatory restrictions that prohibit individuals with criminal records from obtaining licensure or certification.

Housing

Securing stable housing can become increasingly difficult for individuals with a juvenile record. Landlords and property management companies commonly perform background checks on prospective tenants, and a criminal conviction may lead to denial of housing applications or limited housing options. This can exacerbate issues of housing instability and homelessness, further complicating a person’s ability to reintegrate into society and establish a stable, productive life.

Education

Some educational institutions may require disclosure of criminal history during the admissions process, potentially affecting acceptance decisions or eligibility for scholarships and financial aid.

The long-term consequences of a juvenile conviction underscore the critical importance of effective advocacy to mitigate the impact on the juvenile's prospects. An experienced Byran juvenile crime defense attorney can guide juveniles and their families through the post-conviction landscape and work toward rebuilding their lives.

Advocating for Alternative Resolutions for Juvenile Crimes

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Alternative resolutions to juvenile cases, such as diversion programs or community service, offer valuable opportunities for rehabilitation and accountability outside of traditional courtroom proceedings. These programs aim to address the underlying causes of juvenile delinquency, promote positive behavioral change, and prevent further involvement in the criminal justice system.

Diversion programs may involve counseling, educational workshops, or restorative justice practices designed to help juveniles understand the impact of their actions and take responsibility for their behavior. Community service allows juveniles to contribute positively while fulfilling their obligations to society.

An experienced attorney who focuses on juvenile defense plays a crucial role in advocating for these alternative resolutions on behalf of their clients.

Parental Rights and Responsibilities in Bryan Juvenile Crime Cases

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In juvenile crime cases, parents play a crucial role in advocating for their child's best interests and ensuring that their rights are protected throughout the legal process. As such, parents need to be informed about their rights and responsibilities from the moment their child becomes involved in the juvenile justice system.

First and foremost, parents have the right to be involved in their child's case and to be kept informed about all legal proceedings and decisions. This includes the right to attend court hearings, review court documents, and participate in meetings with legal counsel and juvenile justice professionals. Additionally, parents have the right to provide input and make decisions regarding their child's defense strategy, including whether to accept plea deals or pursue alternative resolutions.

Parents also have a responsibility to support and advocate for their children throughout the legal process. This may involve providing emotional support and guidance, helping their child understand their rights and obligations, and making communication between their child and their lawyer easier.

Additionally, parents can help address any underlying issues or challenges that may have contributed to their child's involvement in delinquent behavior, such as substance abuse or mental health issues.

Working closely with their child's attorney helps ensure that their child receives fair treatment and the best possible outcome in their case. Parents can help mitigate the negative consequences of juvenile involvement in the criminal justice system and support their child's successful rehabilitation and reintegration into society.

Supporting Juvenile Mental Health Issues in Criminal Cases

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Many juveniles involved in the criminal justice system may be struggling with mental health issues such as depression, anxiety, ADHD, or substance abuse issues. These underlying issues can significantly impact their behavior and decision-making, potentially leading to involvement in delinquent activities.

By collaborating with mental health experts, attorneys can develop comprehensive defense strategies that take into account the child's mental health needs. They can advocate for alternative resolutions that prioritize rehabilitation and treatment over punishment.

A skilled juvenile crime defense attorney can help ensure that the child's mental health needs are considered by the court and integrated into the overall legal proceedings. They can advocate for outcomes that address these needs while holding the child accountable for their actions.

Contact Bryan, Texas, Lawyers at the Law Office of Shane Phelps

If your child is facing allegations of juvenile delinquency, it's crucial to seek experienced legal representation to protect their rights and future. The Law Offices of Shane Phelps in Bryan, Texas, understands the complexities of juvenile criminal defense and provides compassionate and effective advocacy for families navigating the juvenile justice system.

Led by attorney Shane Phelps, a Board-Certified Criminal Defense Specialist with a proven record of success, our team is committed to securing the best possible outcome for your child. We prioritize personalized attention for each client, taking the time to understand your unique circumstances and develop tailored defense strategies that address your specific needs and goals.

When you choose the Law Offices of Shane Phelps, you can trust that you're getting dedicated and knowledgeable legal representation that puts your child's best interests first. Don't wait to seek help – contact our Bryan criminal defense lawyers today and start protecting your child's future. Call Shane Phelps Law today at 979-773-7028 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation.

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