Juvenile Sexual Realted Offense in Los Angeles
Having practiced juvenile law and specifically dealt with sex crimes over the course of the last twenty-five years, I’ve seen a number of different cases filed, and obviously a number of different results, from my juvenile clients. Really what I’m aimed at in these juvenile cases – whether they be sex crime or otherwise – is to try to set things up for my young client so they can stay out of custody and recover from whatever happens to them in the juvenile court. In other words, we’re trying to set things up so when all is said and done, they get on the right path and they do not have a record that can later be used against them when they try to seek a job and further their future.
Juvenile sex crimes are obviously serious because usually the victim in the case is a juvenile as well, and obviously the prosecutors and judges take these types of crimes very serious because they are trying to protect the youth of society and also protect the public at large. So, when it comes to these types of cases we really have to have a good strategy in order to properly defend the juvenile against some of the harsh realities that start to stack up against them when it comes to a juvenile-related sex crime.
There are a number of different punishments available to the judge and penalties available to the judge in a juvenile sex crime case. First you have to look at what are they going to do with the minor? Are they going to keep the minor in custody or are they going to allow the minor to stay out of custody? One potential ramification at the low end would be that they give the minor some sort of a diversionary program where they don’t end up getting convicted of anything because they don’t get sentenced for their crime. They are given some sort of rehabilitative measure like sex offender programs, community service and then a probationary period, and then they can get the charges knocked off their record and move on with their life. Another potential ramification is that they can give the person home on probation where they basically get to continue to go to school, stay with their family, the probation department keeps an eye on them, and then eventually – depending on what type of a crime it is – they can get the sex offense sealed and destroyed and move on with their life.
For the more serious offenders, they are going to try to put those people either in some sort of a camp, a placement or even the youth authority, which is basically the juvenile prison. In determining this type of punishment, obviously the prosecutors and judge are going to look at the seriousness of the crime, the person’s prior criminal record, how they’re doing in school, how they’re doing at home, their impact on the victim and a host of other related considerations when it comes to a sex crime case in juvenile court. Their defense attorney and how they handle the case is crucial as well. That’s why I obviously have people come in, give me all the details, be real specific, don’t omit anything and don’t put a spin on things so that I can really kind of get down to the nitty-gritty and figure out what can be done to get you the best possible result.
When it comes to results, really what you’re trying to do as a defense attorney is minimize the charges or get a not guilty verdict if the client is innocent. But if they are not innocent and you’re trying to minimize the charge, then you are going to want to attempt to set something up that can be sealed and destroyed. There are a lot of different issues when it comes to sealing and destroying a juvenile’s record in a sex crime case. Factors like their age, the type of offense they committed, and a number of other issues come up and obviously the most seasoned juvenile defense attorneys who are familiar with sex crimes cases in Los Angeles are the ones you want helping you out with these types of cases.
Of course, there are defenses. Most of the time, a defense in any criminal case – but real specifically in juvenile sex cases – is going to hinge on the facts of the particular case. Are there witnesses? Is there direct evidence? Is there circumstantial evidence? These are the questions that a good juvenile defense attorney is going to ask in evaluating the case and what the best course of action is moving forward.
So, really in determining whether you have a defense, you have to look at what is the person alleged to do? What evidence do the prosecutors have against that person? And what evidence does the defense have in order to counter some of the arguments of the prosecutor? Really, the defense attorney’s job in these juvenile sex crime cases should be to get their client’s version of events. Let the client tell them what happened because a lot of times the police don’t get that information and therefore, they are only operating with half the puzzle. My job is to get the other half of the puzzle, figure out what the best course of action is, let the client know and then myself, the client and their family are all working together to make sure we get the best possible result that protects their freedom, their future and their reputation. Contact our law firm to review your case.
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