Ohio Juvenile Law | Attorney Lawyer
Finding out that your teenage child has been charged with a crime can be incredibly frightening, and for many parents, their first instinct is to try to protect their children from convictions that can carry potentially life-long consequences. Having one of the experienced and accomplished Ohio juvenile defense attorneys from Wright & Schulte LLC aggressively defend your child’s rights is critical to his future. In addition to our extensive experience with the nuances of Ohio juvenile law and the criminal justice process, our esteemed legal professionals are highly adept at building and litigating strong juvenile defense cases to facilitate both a favorable resolution to the charges. The Ohio juvenile defense lawyers at Wright & Schulte LLC are dedicated to giving your child the best possible legal representation, so your family and child can focus on a positive and healthy future.
Ohio Juvenile Law Facts and Your Child’s Rights
The purpose of Ohio juvenile law is to “protect the public interest and safety, hold the offender accountable for the offender’s actions, restore the victim, and rehabilitate the offender” (Ohio Rev. Code §2152.01 (A)). A child, which is legally defined as an individual younger than 18 years old, can be legally taken into custody in Ohio as either the result of delinquency or criminal behavior. Complaints of delinquency can be filed against children by those who know that a child is regularly truant from school, grossly disobeys his guardian or acts in a reckless manner that can harm himself or others. Alternately, a juvenile can be detained by the authorities if he has allegedly broken any federal or Ohio state law.
When a child is taken into custody, it is important to know that your child has rights. For example, law enforcement officials can not hold a child for more than three or six hours (depending on the alleged offense); after this period of time, the child must be turned over to his guardian or detained in a juvenile facility. Within 72 hours of initially being taken into custody, juvenile courts must set a hearing date, at which time the charges will be officially stated, and the judge will hear the case. Given this strict time frame, the documents that need to be filed with the court and the undeniable necessity of compiling a strong defense case, it’s vital that children facing criminal charges have the Ohio juvenile defense lawyers of Wright & Schulte LLC on their side to help them navigate through this process as successfully as possible.
Common Ohio Juvenile Charges
While, like adults, children can face misdemeanor or felony charges, some of the more common charges filed against children in Ohio are:
- Traffic offenses, such as underage operation of a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs
- Minor in possession of alcohol
- Juvenile drug possession or other drug-related crimes, such as distribution
- Juvenile property crimes, such as theft and vandalism
- Juvenile sexual assault and violence (or non-sexual assault)
- Juvenile gun crimes.
Such charges against your child can be further complicated by a history of previous convictions against your child and/or your child’s history of mental disability; Ohio juvenile law has a number of specific statutes dictating how these cases should be handled at each step of the criminal judicial process. The skilled Ohio juvenile defense attorneys at Wright & Schulte LLC understand how to handle such complications and are up-to-date with the latest changes to Ohio juvenile laws. While our goal is to avoid conviction altogether, we will do whatever it takes to push for probation and rehabilitation options, rather than strictly punishment – which, in the most serious cases, can involve detention at the Ohio Department of Youth Services (essentially a juvenile prison) – should conviction be unavoidable.
Ohio Juvenile Conviction Statistics
The Ohio Office of Criminal Justice Services regularly compiles statistics regarding juvenile convictions in an effort to pinpoint circumstances that can lead to kids commit crimes and, therefore, try to prevent or minimize the incidence of these crimes. According to their findings:
Roughly 50 percent of juveniles detained in the Ohio Department of Youth Services system required special education, and approximately 30 percent required mental health services.
- In general, detained children had a reading level that was four years behind that to be expected of their age.
- Nearly 60 percent of children detained in the Ohio Department of Youth Services have or have had a family member locked up in jail or prison.
- Children who are sentenced to detention in the Ohio Department of Youth Services have a 50 percent chance of being locked up again (in the same system or in the adult prison system) within three years of being released.
- Family and religious resources are more effective than the threat of punishment for combating juvenile crime.
Ohio Juvenile Defense Attorney Consults and Services
These harrowing statistics highlight the importance of having one of Wright & Schulte LLC’s seasoned Ohio juvenile defense lawyers working on your side to not only defend your child’s rights but to also reduce the chances of conviction and harsh penalties. We are committed to giving your case the personalized attention it needs, and we work tirelessly to help get your child and family through the stressful legal battles with as minimal pain and sacrifice as possible. Call today for a FREE consultation and receive experienced advice from an Ohio juvenile defense lawyer at Wright & Schulte LLC. Please fill out the online form at the right-hand side of this page or call us at (937) 435-9999.