Most Connecticut parents can't even think about the possibility of their child being arrested. However, it can happen. Whether they made a bad choice like driving while intoxicated, they got caught up with kids who were using drugs or a fight got out of hand, many Connecticut kids end up facing criminal charges. In some cases, of course, they are wrongfully charged or over-charged.
While criminal charges against juveniles are generally handled differently under the law than those against adults, they can still have a lasting impact on a child's or teen's life. In addition to the potential for prison time and a criminal record, students can be suspended, expelled or denied campus housing. Their student loan and financial aid eligibility may be impacted. Their job opportunities may be severely limited.
At The Law Office of Jerome Paun, we have 35 years of experience that we can put to work to prevent a conviction if possible and to minimize the consequences of one on your child's life, education and future employment prospects. The potential impact of a juvenile charge and the options available depend on the young person's age.
We can walk parents and children through the options available, such as diversionary programs. These programs can keep kids out of jail and prevent them from having a criminal conviction on their record. For example, Connecticut has a Youthful Offender law. If a person under 18 is determined to be eligible for YO status, he or she can avoid having a criminal record.
Many people in the legal profession and others who work with young people want to give those caught up in crimes as juveniles the ability to make a fresh start if they have grown and learned from their mistakes. The Connecticut legislature is currently considering legislation dubbed the "Second Look" bill. It would allow people who were convicted of serious crimes as juveniles and who had served a majority of their sentence to have a parole hearing where a parole board would take a "second look" at them and their rehabilitation while incarcerated.
If your child has been arrested, do not let him or her face the justice system alone or write it off as a "youthful indiscretion." The potential consequences can be more serious than you think. Call or contact us online to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case.