Here in the state of Illinois, the way in which a juvenile is tried in court will depend entirely on the crime they committed. If the crime is a serious criminal offense, that would likely constitute a felony charge, such as a sexual assault or homicide charge, they will likely be charged as an adult. For other offenses, such as a minor in possession of drugs or alcohol charge, the juvenile will be tried in juvenile court. While the vast majority of juvenile court mandates revolve around probation, rehabilitation, and possible fines, the long-term implications of a juvenile crime can last a lifetime. Below we will take a brief look at juvenile arrest rates throughout the United States, and the potential consequences a juvenile could face after an arrest.
Juvenile Arrest Rates on the Decline
Nationwide, juvenile arrest rates appear to be on the decline. According to the U.S. Department of Justice, 2016 marked one of the lowest statistical years for juvenile crime in recent memory. Serious juvenile crimes such as violent crimes and robbery with an assault weapon had dropped to their lowest in over 5 years.
Equally encouraging is the fact that juvenile drug arrests were at their lowest level since 1990. In fact, juvenile arrests for all crimes and all racial groups have been declining since 2007. Still, the number of arrests are concerning especially as it pertains to drug and alcohol charges. According to the U.S. Department of Justice’s statistical compiling, more than 36,000 American teens were arrested throughout 2016, for violating alcohol laws. Equally concerning, just under 100,000 American teens were arrested for drug abuse, in 2016 alone.
The Impact of a Drug or Alcohol Charge for a Juvenile
Minors consuming drugs or alcohol can be seriously impacted by an arrest. For minors consuming alcohol, a first-time offense comes with a three-month license suspension and six months of court supervision. That being said, there are criteria that can elevate the charges to a Class A Misdemeanor. If your child possessed false identification to purchase or consume alcohol, they will likely be tried as an adult. Juvenile drug charges are likely to lead to drug counseling, probation, diversion, or even detention.
Contact a Naperville Juvenile Defense Attorney
Regardless of the crime, your child is accused of, it is important to take the charge extremely seriously. If for some reason your child’s charges are deemed serious enough to result in a standard criminal trial, the ramifications could be life-changing. Fortunately, Attorney Patricia Magaña has years of experience helping families react to juvenile charges and is prepared to assist your family along every step of the way. To schedule a complimentary initial consultation with a skilled DuPage County criminal defense attorney, call us today at 630-448-2001.