Some juvenile cases are transferred to adult criminal court through a “waiver” process, in which a judge waives the juvenile court’s protections. Juvenile cases that are subject to waiver typically include more serious offenses or juveniles who have previously been in trouble.

Although being tried in adult court provides a child with additional constitutional protections, it also comes with drawbacks, such as the prospect of harsher punishment and time spent in an adult jail facility.

What Crimes Can Cause Juveniles To Be Charged as Adults

When a minor turns 18, most states allow them to be prosecuted as an adult. However, depending on a juvenile’s crime, some states may apply a younger or older age limit.

The following are some examples of offenses for which a juvenile may be charged and tried as an adult criminal defendant:

  • Serious felony offenses or violent crimes like murder, rape, or armed robbery
  • Drug trafficking offenses
  • Acts that are considered “wobbler crimes”
  • Repeated offenses

What Obstacles Will My Child Face in Adult Court?

As previously stated, adult criminal offenders who are convicted in a regular criminal court face substantially heavier penalties than juvenile criminal defendants who are convicted in the juvenile court system. However, in an adult criminal court, a juvenile criminal defendant may face certain less evident challenges.

For example, due to their age, the majority of juvenile defendants lack the capacity to comprehend what a criminal court may ask of them. Even if a kid understands what the court expects or demands of them, they may lack the maturity to implement those lessons correctly. If adult criminal defendants confront similar obstacles, one can only imagine how difficult it will be for a juvenile to overcome them.

Can You Fight It?

If the District Attorney uses a Discretionary Waiver, they must persuade the judge that your child belongs in adult court. In most cases, the judge will order a report on your child, the family, and what happened. The report’s drafting agency will make a recommendation to the court.

You can prepare for the interviews and the investigation with the help of an attorney. Your lawyer will assist you in determining the best way to present your child and demonstrate that he or she does not belong in adult court. A judge’s hearing can be used to question the report, and your attorney can call witnesses to help present your child in the best light possible and ensure that their experience is told completely.

Please call us toll free at 866-214-7036 or fill out the contact form on our website. Serving Brunswick, GA and Glynn, Camden, Brantley, Wayne, Ware and McIntosh Counties.