Even good people can make terrible choices, with life-altering consequences. Teens are particularly likely to fall into the trap of allowing their immature judgment of people and situations to land them in trouble. Fortunately, the juvenile arrest rate has fallen by 43% since it peaked in 1996. However, almost 5% of kids in the 10-17 age groups get into a situation resulting in their arrest.
According to the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, the number of juvenile arrests has declined sharply since the 1980s. This is good news for society as a whole, but meaningless for a 14 year who has just been arrested and is being questioned by the police. He or she will probably not know how to handle the situation.
California law states that juveniles have rights just as adults do. Their constitutional rights include the right to not incriminate themselves, the right to an attorney and the right to Miranda warnings upon arrest. Questioning can be done without the presence or approval of parents, once the minor volunteers to answer their questions. Questioning a minor at school has been addressed by the U.S. Supreme Court. The justices decided that authorities must take the minor’s age into account when deciding whether or not the circumstance required them to issue Miranda warnings. If the child did not feel free to leave, then the police had created a ‘custodial’ situation, requiring Miranda warnings. That decision can have serious repercussions on the outcome of a court case.
The Law Offices of Christopher J. McCann offers experienced criminal defense services to residents in southern California, including Los Angeles and Orange Counties. He never leaves his clients feeling as though they are standing alone. Mr. McCann is always available to his clients, returns their calls personally and promptly; when his client has to be in court, he can count on Christopher McCann to be there with him, prepared to offer a skilled and vigorous defense. He received his Juris Doctorate from Pepperdine University School of Law and was certified in Dispute Resolution by the Strauss Institute of Dispute Resolution. His skilled defense efforts have caused him to be recognized a number of times as a Rising Star Attorney by Southern California Superlawyers Magazine. Anyone who needs an Experienced Criminal Defense Lawyer in Orange County should contact Christopher J. McCann for a free 60 minute case evaluation.