What to Know About Juvenile Crimes in New Jersey

Part of growing up is making mistakes. Unfortunately, some children make mistakes that can follow them throughout their lives. Our firm is dedicated to defending children facing charges for juvenile crimes and getting them back on the right track. Read on to learn more.

Who is Considered a Juvenile in New Jersey?

When a person under the age of 18 commits a crime, it is known as juvenile delinquency. This may happen if the child commits a criminal act, disorderly persons offense, petty disorderly persons offense, or a violation of a penal statute, ordinance, or regulation.

What is the Process of Juvenile Proceedings?

During a juvenile case, the court has two main goals: holding the child accountable for their actions and rehabilitating them. The first step of this process is determining whether the individual committed the crime they are accused of. In some cases, depending on the nature of the crime, it is possible for the juvenile to be put into a juvenile facility. The court makes these decisions based on the nature of the crime, its severity, the age of the offender, and any prior record.

The proceedings may take place in the following ways:

  • Juvenile Conference Committee or Intake Services Conference
    • The juvenile and their parents talk about the case with a trained citizen volunteer panel or a Judiciary staff person. This process is informal and does not determine delinquency. Instead, recommendations will be made to a judge regarding consequences for approval. 
  • Juvenile referee/Informal court
    • A hearing takes place where the juvenile is expected to admit to or deny committing the crime. The facts of the case will be reviewed in order to determine delinquency so that recommendations can be made to the judge. 
  • Judge/Formal court
    • A judge oversees a court hearing where the juvenile will plead guilty or not guilty, and the court can order a consequence for rehabilitation.

What Consequences Can a Juvenile Face in New Jersey? 

If found guilty, a juvenile can face a variety of consequences for their actions. This may include the following:

  • Community service
  • Fines
  • Probation
  • Release to a parent or guardian
  • Required support services or parental involvement
  • Residential mental health and/or substance abuse and alcohol treatment
  • Restitution
  • Transfer of custody
  • Secure confinement/incarceration
  • Suspended driver’s license
  • Work, outdoor, academic, and/or vocational programs

If your child is facing charges for a juvenile crime in New Jersey, contact our experienced firm today.

Contact our experienced Red Bank firm

Our firm proudly represents clients in New Jersey who are faced with matters of family law, criminal defense, business law, real estate law, or estate planning. If you require strong and dedicated representation for any of your legal matters, please do not hesitate to contact The Law Offices of George J. Mardinly to schedule a consultation.