Young people sometimes make mistakes. However, the law recognizes that a minor who commits a crime should not be treated the same in Court as an adult who does the same thing. For minors, there is a completely different court system that takes the minor’s age and future into account. David Franks has served as a juvenile prosecutor in Cook County, and has several years of juvenile defense experience in private practice. If your child has been accused of a crime, contact Franks and Rechenberg, P.C. today for a free initial consultation. We have helped many people in your situation, and we can help you, too.
PROTECTING YOUR CHILD’S RIGHTS
As with any crime, the individual accused has certain rights. We fight hard to protect those rights.
We have handled juvenile cases, for example, that involved:
– underage drinking
– retail theft (shoplifting)
– sexual assault
– unlawful possession of weapons
In defending a minor, our first objective is to protect your child’s rights, and to ensure his or her schooling is not disrupted. The rules and procedures for juvenile court are different than adult court. Children and their parents are brought into juvenile court on a petition filed by the prosecutor. In adult court, adults are brought into court after a police officer or citizen files a criminal complaint against the offender. In adult court, an adult is sentenced to either Court Supervision, Conditional Discharge (resulting in a conviction similar to non-reporting probation) or probation, which also results in conviction. In juvenile court, sentencing is called a disposition hearing. Similar to adult court, the juvenile court judge may place the minor on Court Supervision at the disposition hearing. Unlike adult court, however, there are no convictions in juvenile court. If a juvenile court judge does not place a minor on Court Supervision, there is no conviction, but rather an adjudication of juvenile delinquency.
If the prosecutor does not dismiss the petition or amend the charges contained in the petition, or if we cannot beat the counts contained in the petition, we fight for supervision instead of an adjudication of juvenile delinquency. If the juvenile court judge places a minor on Court Supervision, he or she is under a court order to follow certain rules, requirements, and procedures. For example, your child would be required to remain in school, abide by curfew, main contact with a probation officer, or perhaps obtain counseling. If he or she successfully complies with the court order, the matter is dismissed and there will be no adjudication of juvenile delinquency.
Juvenile records are sealed, and only law enforcement officials will have access to the record. The petition and disposition will not show up during an ordinary background check.
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us. We would be happy to sit down and talk with you and your child about your child’s case.