Having your child arrested or charged with a criminal offense may seem overwhelming. You do not know where to turn or what to do. You may have opened your front your door in to be faced with law enforcement standing there with your child in tow. Even worse, you get a call that your child was taken into custody and is at a juvenile detention center. The situation is stressful no matter what the circumstances.
In Washington, even though the primary goal for juvenile offenders is rehabilitation, you do not want your child talking to law enforcement without an attorney present. Juveniles often unwittingly give incriminating statements that are later used against them. They should be cautioned not to talk to their friends about any events that led to the arrest or charges being filed. Friends may be called as witnesses if the case goes to trial.
You need to contact a Washington state criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Early intervention may result in a reduction of charges or mitigation of punishment.
Call Attorney Patrick Earl, a Moses Lake juvenile charges lawyer
Attorney Patrick Earl is an experienced criminal defense attorney who has more than 20 years of experience representing juvenile offenders in all state courts. He will evaluate the facts of the case and review all relevant reports. He will not just tell you what you want to hear, but will make sure you and your child understand all aspects of the case, both good and bad.
He will discuss with you and your child all relevant options and work with you both to provide your child the best possible legal defense. Some special programs, such as diversion, may be available.
Depending on the nature of the offense and criminal history of the juvenile, the prosecutor may take the case out of the court system and send it to the Diversion Unit. The juvenile must sign a diversion agreement and comply with its terms. Diversion programs often include:
- Participation in a prescribed number of hours of community service.
- Paying a fine.
- Orders for restitution, which is money paid back to the victim of the offense.
- Participation in educational programs.
- Evaluation to see if there is a need for alcohol or drug rehabilitation programs.
- Imposition of a curfew.
If the terms of diversion are met, there is no prosecution.
Washington state criminal defense for juveniles
If diversion is not an option, Attorney Patrick Earl will vigorously work on your child’s behalf whether that means taking the case to trial in front of a juvenile court judge or negotiation for a reduction in charges or mitigation of punishment. You can rest easier knowing that Mr. Earl is working zealously on behalf of you and your child.