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Los Angeles Juvenile Criminal Defense Attorney:

Defending Juveniles who have been charged with Violent Crimes in California

In many instances, people under 18 years of age and who have been accused of committing a crime will be tried in juvenile court. However, in the case of more violent crimes, juveniles can be tried in adult court, potentially resulting in severe penalties that could affect them for the rest of their lives.

If you or a loved one is a juvenile under the California Penal Code and have been charged with committing a crime of violence, you need an experienced defense lawyer on your side who regularly handles juvenile cases. At The Law Offices of David S. Chesley, our knowledgeable team of California juvenile criminal defense lawyers offer you skilled representation at defending your case and helping you achieve the best possible result in your circumstances

Juvenile Court Proceedings

Many juvenile criminal proceedings go forward in juvenile court. The primary goal of juvenile court is to rehabilitate the minor. The major steps in the juvenile court process include the following:

  • Detention hearings for juveniles who have already been taken into custody and arraignments for juveniles who have not yet been taken into custody
  • Transfer hearings (in the cases where, under the law, the juvenile could be charged as an adult)
  • Jurisdiction hearings (also known as the criminal trial)
  • Disposition hearings (where the judge imposes a criminal sentence)

All of these hearings and legal proceedings in a juvenile criminal case must occur within certain time frames. This ensures that all cases are kept on track and that they do not drag on for years at a time. The experienced California juvenile violent crime lawyers at The Law Offices of David S. Chesley can explain the steps of the juvenile court process to you and can determine if your case is likely to be transferred to adult court.

Juvenile Case Dispositions

If a case is allowed to proceed forward in juvenile court, there are several available case dispositions. In some instances, the minor may be able to complete a diversion program and have his or her charge dismissed after successfully completing the probation. The minor may also be subject to one of the following:

The juvenile criminal defense lawyers at The Law Offices of David S. Chesley can help you explore all of the available alternatives and may be able to help you obtain the lightest sentence possible. A lawyer can also argue for a diversion program or a period of criminal probation on your behalf, potentially helping you avoid a conviction.

Charging a Juvenile as an Adult – Violent Crimes

In some instances, minors who have been charged with a serious crime of violence may have their cases tried in adult court, as opposed to juvenile court. The California prosecutor, for example, may request a transfer hearing. During that hearing, a judge will decide whether or not the minor should be criminally charged as an adult, rather than as a juvenile. Once a person turns 21 years old, he or she is no longer eligible for juvenile court, and the juvenile court will no longer have jurisdiction over him or her.

Types of Violent Crimes

There are numerous violent crimes which can subject a juvenile to adult court proceedings, rather than juvenile court proceedings. Some of those crimes include the following:

  • Murder – also known as killing someone with malice aforethought – or with the intent to kill, cause serious bodily injury, or with reckless disregard for human life. Felony-murder also constitutes murder. An attempted murder charge may also result in adult court proceedings, rather than juvenile court proceedings.
  • Robbery – In order for a juvenile to be charged with robbery, he or she must intentionally take someone else’s property in that person’s presence, using force or threat of force, and with the intention of permanently depriving that person of the property.
  • Arson – A juvenile can be charged with arson if he or she maliciously sets fire to land, a building, or some other property. A juvenile can also be charged with arson in California if he or she recklessly sets fire to land, a building, or some other property located in the State.
  • Rape with force – A California juvenile can be charged with rape by forcing intercourse on another using violence – or by threatening the alleged victim with serious bodily harm.
    Sodomy with force – A juvenile commits sodomy by force when using violence or threatening the alleged victim with violence or serious bodily harm.
  • Kidnapping for ransom, for robbery purposes, or with bodily harm – In order for a juvenile to commit the crime of kidnapping, he or she must physically move someone else a substantial distance without his or her consent. Moreover, the juvenile must use force or threat of force (i.e., threatening the alleged victim with physical harm) in order to accomplish this feat.
  • Assault with a deadly weapon – In order for a juvenile to be charged with assault with a deadly weapon, he or she must have taken some action that was likely to result in force being applied to another person – either with a deadly weapon or by some other means that would likely result in serious bodily injury. Moreover, the juvenile must have performed the act intentionally and with a present ability to exercise the force.
  • Discharging a firearm – A juvenile may be charged with discharging a firearm into an occupied or inhabited building if he or she intentionally fires a firearm at a dwelling where people live, an occupied motor vehicle, an occupied building, an occupied aircraft, or an occupied camper or other recreational vehicle.
  • Torture – A charge for torture can arise when the juvenile inflicts serious bodily harm on someone else while intending to bring about extreme or cruel suffering and pain. The accused must undertake these actions for some sadistic purpose, such as for extortion, revenge, or persuasion.
  • Aggravated mayhem – A charge for aggravated mayhem can come about if the accused deprives the alleged victim of a body part (such as an arm or leg), disfigures a part of another person’s body, cuts a person’s tongue or puts his or her eye out, or slits the alleged victim’s ear, nose, or lip.
  • Carjacking – A minor can be charged with carjacking if he or she takes a motor vehicle from the alleged victim by using force or threats of force. This means that the accused actually inflicts serious bodily harm on the alleged victim or that he or she threatens to do so.

In cases where a juvenile is charged as an adult, the juvenile may be subject to adult penalties, including fines and incarceration. The California juvenile violent crime lawyers at The Law Offices of David S. Chesley can help you minimize the consequences of an adult conviction and can fight for a charge reduction or plea deal on your behalf.

Talk to a California Juvenile Violent Crimes Lawyer Today

At The Law Offices of David S. Chesley, we understand the stress and uncertainty of being charged with a juvenile crime of violence. Our skilled legal team is ready to assist you with your case and defend you in the courtroom. Your lawyer may be able to raise an alibi on your behalf, allege that you were entrapped by a police officer, or that you committed the crime under duress.

To schedule a free consultation and case evaluation with our California juvenile violent crimes lawyer, please call us today at 1-800-755-5174, or contact us online.

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Recent Results

  • Multiple defendants each facing 7 years charged with smuggling prescription drugs into California from Mexico our client was the only defendant who received NO JAIL TIME!

  • Client facing 5 years for possession of deadly weapon we negotiated a plea for NO JAIL TIME!

  • Client facing 3 life terms for multiple felony counts of Child Molestation and Sodomy with child we proved the charges were fabricated by victims mother DISMISSAL of all charges at preliminary hearing!

  • Strike case: Client charged with possession of methamphetamine facing 25 years we filed a Romero Motion which was granted case REDUCED TO MISDEMEANOR!

  • Client's estranged girlfriend alleged Client broke into her room and choked her facing 14 years in State Prison we won at trial JURY ACQUITTAL.

  • Police allegedly discovered 3 bags of marijuana in client's glove box faced 6 years we filed a 1538.5 motion to suppress resulting in DISMISSAL of all charges!

  • Client allegedly sold rock cocaine to undercover officer faced 10 years following our argument client received NO JAIL TIME!

  • Client facing 15 years for Armed Robbery we proved misidentification Judge DISMISSED the case!

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