When someone under the age of 18 is charged with a crime, the police and prosecutors often approach the case not to punish the child, but rather to rehabilitate him or her. This means that juvenile crimes are handled in a completely different manner than criminal charges involving adults and require a wholly unique set of experience and skills to handle competently. The knowledgeable attorneys of DuBoff & Associates, Chartered can help.
The juvenile court process in Maryland
For the most part, the case of anyone under the age of 18 who is charged with a crime in Maryland is processed in the juvenile system. This begins when a police officer issues a juvenile citation.
The juvenile defendant has a meeting with the Department of Juvenile Services. At this intake meeting, the department may close the case immediately, forward the case to the state for prosecution or place the juvenile on a period of supervision. In the case of prosecution, the state’s attorney determines the appropriate charges, which will be heard by a judge in juvenile court. In Maryland, the maximum sentence a juvenile can face is incarceration until age 21, but jail time is rare in these cases.
In certain extreme cases, a minor can be charged and tried in the adult criminal system, in which he or she face the adult punishments for his or her crimes.
Common juvenile offenses in Maryland
A minor can theoretically commit and be charged with any crime in the state of Maryland, but most juvenile cases revolve around certain common offenses:
- Sexting, sexual assault and other such sex offenses
- Underage drinking or possession of alcohol
At DuBoff & Associates, Chartered, our criminal defense lawyers realize how different juvenile cases are from criminal cases involving adults. We know how to strategize differently for juvenile courts as opposed to traditional criminal courts. Most important, we understand that the future of a child hangs in the balance and do everything possible to protect the rights of that child.
A premier Maryland juvenile crimes attorney understands the problems you face
The skilled attorneys of DuBoff & Associates, Chartered bring more than 50 years of combined experience to the table for all of our clients. With offices located in Silver Spring and Baltimore, we’re here to help across the state and across the nation. Contact us today online or at 301.495.3131 to arrange a consultation.
Home and hospital visits are available to our seriously injured clients who are unable to make it to our office and we offer evening and weekend appointments when necessary. We are pleased to offer free initial consultations in certain cases.