Montgomery County Juvenile Lawyer
Juvenile Attorneys in Montgomery County PA
One of the worst phone calls a parent can receive is one saying that their child has been arrested for a crime. During those first few days following their arrest, parents are rightfully concerned about how this mistake will affect their entire life. Being arrested and spending time in a juvenile detention center can adversely affect their futures, their education and employment opportunities, and their self-esteem. If they’re also struggling with drug or alcohol dependency or have a mental illness, being arrested can cause them to worsen and can put their lives in jeopardy. The Montgomery County Juvenile Court can be a tough, sobering experience for your child. Get the help they need and now.
As a parent, it is important to know that just because your child is under the age of 18, doesn’t mean that they will avoid going to prison. In many cases, juveniles under the age of 18 can be tried as an adult in a court of law. If they’re convicted, they may have a felony criminal record for the remainder of their lives or suffer other harsh penalties such as mandatory sex offender registration or the loss of the rights to own a firearm. Are you in need of an experienced juvenile lawyer in King of Prussia, Pottstown, Plymouth Meeting, Hatboro, Horsham, or Ardmore?
Get Our Team Now Before Its Too Late
At Ciccarelli Law Offices, our Montgomery County juvenile defense attorney are ready to assist you and your family during this difficult and emotional time. You can contact our office by email or by phone at (610) 692-8700 or 877 529-2422. When you contact our Montgomery County, Pennsylvania juvenile defense attorneys today, you can rest assured knowing your child has a team of experienced juvenile defense lawyers in their corner fighting for them every step of the way. Without an attorney on your side, your child could face serious penalties and consequences that could adversely affect their entire life.
Juvenile Crime in Montgomery County & Pennsylvania
Montgomery County is the 71st most populous county in the United States and the 3rd most populous county in the state of Pennsylvania. More than 825,000 residents live in Montgomery County and it is home to a wide mixture of urban, suburban, and rural families. It was named the 9th Best Place to Raise a Family by Forbes magazine in 2008 and it is the 51st wealthiest county in the country.
In 2016, 511 juveniles were admitted to detention centers in Montgomery County for an average of 6 days per visit. The Montgomery County Youth Center is located in Norristown, Pennsylvania. It is a 48 bed detention center that houses juveniles between the ages of 10 and 18 who are awaiting juvenile court hearings. Their primary objective is to provide a safe place for juveniles in custody. They provide round-the-clock direct supervision and often provide courts will a full psychosocial evaluation for use at the juvenile disposition hearing.
According to the 2016 Pennsylvania Juvenile Court Dispositions, 947 juveniles were convicted of committing substantiated offenses in 2016 alone Of those, 312 committed an offense to a person, 271 were property crimes, and 173 were drug offenses. 191 offenses committed in 2016 were crimes that ranged from disorderly conduct to firearm offenses.
The majority of children and teenagers that are arrested are arrested for minor crimes that pose no major threat to society, such as underage drinking, vandalism, truancy, or probation violations. As such, the juvenile court system focuses on rehabilitation instead of punishment. In addition, care is taken to keep the minor in their own home unless it is determined that their home life contributed to their delinquency or is harmful to the child.
Juvenile Criminal Defense Lawyers in Montgomery County
At Ciccarelli Law Offices, our Montgomery County juvenile criminal defense lawyers have successfully represented juveniles accused of committing a variety of crimes, including:
- Underage drinking
- Disorderly conduct
- Assault or battery
- Possession of marijuana
- Drug sales, trafficking, or possession
- Bullying or other school offenses
- Traffic violations
- Juvenile Drug Charges
- Juvenile Marijuana Charges
- Juvenile DUI
- Minor in Possession of Alcohol
- Juvenile Theft
- Juvenile Sex Crimes
- Juvenile Assault
- College Offenses
- School crimes
- Juvenile Court
- Serious Crimes
Throughout Montgomery County, we’ve helped juveniles who have been accused of crimes, including: Norristown, Pottstown, King of Prussia, Lansdale, Willow Grove, Horsham, Montgomeryville, Ardmore, Harleysville, Audubon, Glenside, Sanatoga, Kulpsville, Conshohocken, Hatboro, Maple Glen, Souderton, Ambler, Plymouth Meeting, Blue Bell, Trooper, Penn Wynne, Oreland, Wyndmoor, and Fort Washington.
The Montgomery County Juvenile Justice Process Overview
The intake process begins as soon as your child is arrested. When your child is arrested, they will either be released home to await a meeting with their Juvenile Probation Intake Officer or they will be sent to a juvenile detention center to await their hearing. If they are sent to a detention center, they must receive a detention hearing within 72 hours. During that hearing, the judge will determine if they are to be released home or if continued detention is recommended.
If your child has committed a minor offense or is a first time offender, they may be send to the county’s First Offender or Diversion Program. These youths are not referred to the juvenile court system and their case is closed. If your child is referred to the juvenile court, then the intake officer will continue their assessments of the case and of your child. The probation intake officer will then make a determination to either refer your child to informal supervision or file a petition with the court for an Adjudication Hearing.
If there is enough evidence against your child and the offense isn’t minor, a delinquency petition will be filed and your child’s case will be heard by a judge at their Adjudication Hearing. During this hearing the District Attorney will present their case and your child’s defense attorney will present theirs. It is similar to an adult trial, except there is no jury. The judge will decide if your child has committed the delinquent act and whether your child is in need of supervision, treatment, or rehabilitation.
The final hearing will be the Disposition Hearing. This is when the judge will determine what should happen to your child. The juvenile will either be placed on probation or sent to a juvenile residential facility for further supervision. Juveniles may face hefty fines, the payment of restitution, and potential community service.
Key Issues in Juvenile Defense
Juvenile Proceedings in Pennsylvania
Deferred Adjudication and the Consent Decree for Chester County Juveniles
Potential Consequences for a Juvenile Conviction in West Chester
How will Juvenile Charges Impact My College Application?
Do a need a Juvenile Attorney?
What is the Juvenile Court Process?
Will Your Child Be Prosecuted like an Adult?
What Does a Juvenile Probation Officer Do?
What’s the Difference Between a Juvenile and an Adult Prosecution?
Understanding Probation in Montgomery County
If your child is placed on probation, they will remain in your home and under your care. During this time your child must follow rules and conditions that the Court has imposed. Some of those rules outline where your child is allowed to go, who they are allowed to spend time with, and when they must return home. They may also include guidelines for paying restitution to the victim, attending substance abuse or mental health treatment programs, paying court fines, and attending counseling. The goal of probation is to rehabilitate your child and help them turn their lives around. To do this, they will need their family’s love and support.
When your child is on informal supervision or probation in Montgomery County, there are numerous things parents can do to support them and improve their futures.
- Questions – the legal process is complicated and parents are often stressed and confused throughout. Ask your attorney and your child’s probation officer questions so you can better understand the process and what is required of both you and your child.
- Educate – it is important to know what your child needs to do to complete all court-orders and determine what your responsibilities will be during this time. For example, you may be required to drive your child to treatment programs or probation meetings.
- Participate – troubled juveniles need their parents on their side during this difficult time. Participation is key to showing your child that they matter and that they have a loving and supportive team in their corner. Take an active interest in your child’s education, attend counseling sessions if possible, and seek out support groups.
- Available – be available at all times for your child and for the probation officer or people caring for your child. Attend meetings, keep a working telephone number, update contact information, and keep communication open.
- Plan – work on a plan for how you and your family will help your child transition from detention or treatment facilities back to their home life. Work with teachers to develop an educational plan and work with your teen to help them plan for their future.
How a Montgomery County Juvenile Defense Attorney Can Help
One arrest could alter the course of your child’s life forever. Children and young teenagers are impressionable and often make mistakes. However, one mistake or transgression shouldn’t necessarily define their entire life. Sadly, for many juveniles – it does. When your child is facing juvenile charges, it is important to fight these charges aggressively to protect their future and help them get their lives back on track. Contact Ciccarelli Law Offices at (610) 692-8700.
Our Montgomery County office is located at 494 West Germantown Pike, Plmouth Meeting, PA to better serve you. We have successfully defended juveniles throughout Pennsylvania who have been arrested and accused of a variety of crimes. We represent juvenile clients in Chester County, Berks County, Bucks County, Lancaster County, Delaware County, Montgomery County and Philadelphia.