Orange County Criminal Defense Attorney
Has Your Child Been Charged with a Crime? We Can Work to Fight the Charges & Protect Your Child's Future.

Orange County Juvenile Crime Attorney

About Juvenile Offenses in Southern California

California's criminal justice system has the difficult task of enforcing laws and imposing punishment upon individuals who commit crimes. Throughout the state and across Orange County, our criminal justice system also deals uniquely with juveniles who are charged with committing a criminal offense. Because juveniles are under the age of 18, their cases require specialized attention.

If your son or daughter is currently included in a juvenile delinquency case in Orange County, this means that he or she is not only in trouble, but they’re being accused of breaking the law. In this situation, the court is going to be examining the specifics of your child’s case, such as your child’s age, the seriousness of the crime, and whether your son or daughter has a criminal record.

Has your child been charged with a juvenile crime in Orange County? Call our firm today at (866) 902-6880 for a FREE case evaluation!

Common Juvenile Crimes Tried in CA

In California, there are certain crimes the juvenile justice system sees more often than others, including:

These crimes are common, as juveniles can be prone to rebellion and may not always understand the consequences of their actions. That does not mean that these crimes are not without their punishment, and it does not mean that prosecutors won't aggressively charge and penalize juveniles who commit more serious theft, sex, or violent crimes. In fact, juveniles can be charged as adults in certain situations.

What if My Child is Arrested?

Whenever a minor is arrested any number of things can happen: The police can record the arrest and send the child home. The child can be sent to an agency that will counsel and care for the child. The child can be “cited back” to the police station. Meaning, he or she is told to come back to the station.

Additionally, the child’s parents and the child can be given a Notice to Appear, or the child can be placed in juvenile hall in what’s called “detention.” If this happens, your child can make at least two calls within the first hour of being arrested. One call has to be to a parent, guardian, family member or boss. The second call has to be to an attorney.


For minors age 15 or younger, by law, they are supposed to talk to an attorney before they waive their Miranda Rights or talk to the police.


After the court carefully evaluates your child’s case, it can order:

  • Your child is to continue living at home but under the court’s supervision.
  • Your child is to be placed on probation, but he or she may not be allowed to live with you. Your child to go live in a foster home, with a family member, or in an institution.
  • Your child is to be placed on probation and sent to live someplace else, such as a ranch or camp for troubled youth.
  • Your child is to be housed in the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Division of Juvenile Justice.

If your son or daughter is tried in adult court, he or she will be treated like an adult. Meaning, they can be sent to the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Division of Adult Operations, to carry out their sentence.

Will My Child Be Tried in Adult Criminal Court?

While the answer depends on the facts of the case, yes, it is possible that your child will be tried in adult criminal court. If your child is tried as an adult, this means that he or she will be subject to adult punishment if they are found guilty.

Under California’s three-strikes law, when minors commit certain serious and violent crimes, they can be counted against the minor as a “strike” down the road, even if the juvenile’s records are sealed.

In California, children as young as 14 years of age can be tried as an adult when they commit serious crimes. One of the reasons this age has been set so low is because gangs have been recruiting youth to commit serious violent crimes.

By lowering the minimum age for adult court, youth are deterred from committing gang-related crimes. Examples of crimes that can cause a minor to be tried as an adult:

  • Rape
  • Arson (with people inside the building)
  • Drug crimes
  • Crimes involving guns
  • Carjacking and kidnapping
  • Armed robbery
  • Attempted murder and murder

What if My Child is Sent to the DJJ?

If the court decides to send your son or daughter to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, Division of Juvenile Justice (DJJ), then your child will spend the first 30 to 90 days at the “reception center.”

While your child is at the reception center, the center will take a closer look into the circumstances of your child’s case and will decide what types of education and treatment would help. After that first 30 to 90 days, your child will be sent to either a youth camp or a correctional facility.

Protecting Futures

At the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry we understand the unique and challenging elements of juvenile crime cases. Our experienced criminal attorneys work to help juveniles and parents understand the charges they face, and we fight aggressively to protect their futures.

Because many juvenile courts are focused on rehabilitation rather than strict punishment, we focus on options that can keep clients from behind bars and put them on the path for future success. Whatever the case may be, we want to help our clients reach the best resolution possible in their case, and help them as they put mistakes in their past.

Learn How We Can Help During a Free Consultation

Our legal team is available to meet with parents and families who want more information about how we can fight for their son or daughter.

If you have questions about a juvenile case in Orange County, contact our firm as soon as possible for a FREE and confidential case review!

Request Your Free Case Review Today

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What Sets the Law Offices of
Virginia L. Landry Apart?

  • Rated a "Top DUI Attorney" and Board Certified in DUI Defense

  • Achieved a Perfect 10 Out of 10 Superb Rating On Avvo

  • Past President of the West Orange County Bar Association

  • Hundreds of Trials and Thousands of Motions Achieved for Clients

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Protecting Our Clients Is Our Number One Priority
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