Posted on: 5 July 2018Share
The first goal of a parent is to protect their child. However, children sometimes make bad decisions -- decisions that could land them behind bars. If your child has been charged with a crime, it is a serious matter. It's vital you know what to do to protect your child. Here are some things you should do now.
Take the Matter Seriously
You and your child must take the matter seriously. Juveniles are often granted a level of leniency that is not extended to adult offenders, but this perceived mercy does not mean that your child will walk away unpunished.
Your child should understand the level of seriousness that surrounds the criminal justice system and the long-term consequences that could arise if they are found guilty as charged. Children charged and convicted of crimes can face challenges in getting a job and even enrolling in college and receiving financial aid. Sit down with your child, and discuss the matter in detail.
Keep Your Child Focused
The hard part begins after the arrest. If your teenager has been arrested and charged with a crime, even if the child is out on bail, they aren't exactly safe. Between now and the time of their conviction, everything your child does could be scrutinized.
If your child gets into any more trouble, their actions will only make matters worse, and they could even open up the possibility of more charges. Do your best to keep your child focused and out of trouble. Whether it means altering your schedule or enrolling the child in extra activities, the goal is to keep the child from getting into any more conflict.
Hire an Attorney
The criminal justice system is both wide-reaching and complex. You need an attorney who will look out for your child and ensure their rights are protected. For example, as a minor, children sometimes have the option of completing a rehabilitation program in place of receiving a violation and establishing a criminal record.
Drug and alcohol and anger management programs are all standard options. The option for an alternative sentence may or may not be made readily available. However, an attorney understands the law and will use this knowledge to ensure your teenager receives the best possible outcome.
No parent wants to face such an unfortunate scenario. But now that you're here, you must do everything in your power to safeguard your child. Don't hesitate to contact a criminal defense attorney to ensure you're working towards this goal.