Contact Our Jersey City Office To Speak To A Former Prosecutor Who Served As The Director Of The Juvenile Unit
Children who commit acts in Harrison NJ that are criminal are spared prosecution in the same manner as an adult because their conduct is considered “juvenile delinquency”. Their cases are heard in the Family Division of the Hudson County Superior Court in Jersey City when this is the case. As a parent, you need to act quickly to retain the services of an experienced Hudson County juvenile defense lawyer to protect your child. Although family court focuses more on rehabilitation than punishment, the court has the power to place your child in a juvenile detention facility instead remaining at home. In addition, every minor must be represented by an attorney when they appear in court so you must either be indigent and qualify for a public defender or hire a private lawyer. There is no ability for a parent to appear on behalf of their son or daughter — they must be represented by counsel.
At the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall, our attorneys have the tools required in order to ensure the best outcome in your child’s case. We can offer you credentials that include:
- 200 combined experience defending juvenile charges
- 10 lawyers that handle exclusively criminal defense
- Former county prosecutors that include a Director of the Juvenile Unit, Major Crimes, Drugs Task Force and the Trial Division
- Criminal Trial Attorneys on staff
The lawyers at our firm combine their criminal defense skills and intimate knowledge of the New Jersey Code of Juvenile Justice to providing children accused of juvenile delinquency with the aggressive defense capable of protecting their constitutional rights and obtaining an outcome that is in the child’s best interest. Call us now at 201.309.0500 to speak with a Harrison juvenile defense lawyer in a free initial consultation available 24 hours a day and 365 days a year.
Understanding Juvenile Offenses in Harrison
People frequently make the mistake of forgetting that juvenile delinquency cases might be heard in the Family Division of Hudson County Superior Court, but children enjoy many of the same constitutionally protected rights that adults charged with criminal conduct have in criminal court. Protecting those rights and making ensuring that your child is treated fairly by the juvenile justice system is role taken on by our juvenile defense attorney representing your child. Some criminal offenses seem to be more common to juvenile delinquency charges than others, including:
Simple and Aggravated Assault
Crimes involving use of computers such as harassment and invasion of privacy
Vandalism and Criminal Mischief
Drug Possession (e.g. marijuana, ecstasy, cocaine, hashish, Xanax, etc.)
CDS Distribution & Possession With Intent to Distribute
Weapon & Gun Possession
The New Jersey Juvenile Justice Commission has jurisdiction over children who have yet to reach 18 years of age. The code allows the police to take a child into custody for committing what would normally be a criminal offense under state law, but because the individual is a minor, the charge is juvenile delinquency. Once taken into custody, your child has a right to a hearing in the family court where our juvenile defense lawyer can argue in favor of his or her immediate release to return home. When a child who is at least 14 years of age commits one of the following serious criminal offenses, the prosecution has the right to request waiver of the case from the family court to an adult criminal court:
Robbery as a crime of the first degree
Aggravated sexual assault
Aggravated assault as a crime of the second degree
Family court judges have discretion when deciding a waiver request to retain family court jurisdiction over the case. Waiver can be based upon the seriousness of the offense, the extent of physical injuries suffered by a victim and the prior record of the accused. Our attorneys diligently challenge a request for waiver of a case by presenting evidence supporting a claim that the family court offers the best opportunity for the child’s rehabilitation and rebutting the factors the prosecution offers in support of its requested waiver.
Disposition of Juvenile Cases in Harrison
Juveniles in family court are entitled to a hearing during which the prosecution has the burden of proving the alleged conduct beyond a reasonable doubt. We prepare and investigate juvenile delinquency cases as we would a case in the criminal court to identify defenses we can use and evidence favorable to your child. If the prosecution succeeds in proving the allegations, the case proceeds to the disposition stage at which a judge must decide the best method for accomplishing rehabilitation. Options available to a court include:
Release to parents
Mental health or substance abuse treatment and counseling
Academic or vocational programs
Confinement to a secure juvenile facility operated by the state
In addition to arguing in favor of a rehabilitation plan that is best suited for your child, we also pursue diversion options to keep the case out of court; however, the sooner we are involved in your child’s case, the more diversion options might be available to us. For instance, the Juvenile Conference Committee (JCC) conducts an informal meeting with your child and other parties with an interest in the case. The panel could recommend a resolution of the case with community service, restitution or counseling. If your child satisfactorily completes the conditions recommended by the JCC, the juvenile delinquency case would be dismissed.
Harrison Juvenile Defense Lawyer
You want what is best for your child and that includes representation by attorneys which a track record of favorable outcomes representing juveniles in the Hudson County Superior Court. The Harrison juvenile defense lawyers from the Law Offices of Jonathan F. Marshall have precisely the pedigree you need with decades of success defending children charged with criminal offenses. A proven history such as this is what is required in order to protect the future of your son or daughter. Call us now at 201.309.0500 to speak to one of the lawyers at the firm in a free consultation.