Whereas most alleged adult criminal violations are governed by the Texas Penal Code, alleged crimes involving juveniles are regulated by the Texas Family Code. While many juvenile cases focus more on rehabilitation than punishment, alleged juvenile offenders can have criminal records if they are adjudicated guilty of criminal offenses.
In addition to penalties that may include possible suspension of driver’s licenses, community service, and required payment of various fees or costs, a criminal record can also create substantial hardships with many college or employment applications. Certain serious criminal offenses may even result in minors being tried as adults.
If you or your child were detained anywhere in Denton County for an alleged juvenile crime, it will be in your best interest to immediately retain legal counsel. Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy can fight to help you achieve the most favorable outcome to your case, including possibly having the criminal charges minimized or completely dismissed.
Denton criminal defense lawyers Richard McConathy and Brian Bolton represent alleged juvenile offenders in Flower Mound, Highland Village, Lewisville, Little Elm, The Colony, Argyle, and many surrounding areas of Denton County. Call 940-222-8004 today to have our attorneys provide an honest and thorough evaluation of your case during a free, confidential consultation.
Alleged juvenile offenders can be charged with many of the same violations of state law as adults. Some of the most common misdemeanor and felony offenses that children are accused of include, but are not limited to:
Minors can be referred to juvenile courts in Texas when they alleged commit acts that constitute engaging in delinquent conduct or conduct indicating a need for supervision (CINS). How alleged conduct is classified can play a major role in the possible punishments an alleged juvenile offender may face.
Delinquent conduct is defined by the Juvenile Justice Code as conduct, other than a traffic offense, that violates a penal law of the state of Texas and is punishable by imprisonment or by confinement in jail, or a violation of a reasonable and lawful order which was entered by a juvenile court. Serious offenses classified as delinquent conduct may be punishable by sentences in the Texas Juvenile Justice Department (TJJD).
CINS includes certain non-criminal or status offenses and less serious law violations, such as:
CINS cases are not punishable by terms of incarceration and generally result in treatment or diversion programs.
Most cases involving alleged juvenile offenders are handled in juvenile courts. The juvenile court may waive its exclusive original jurisdiction and transfer a child to the appropriate district court or criminal district court for criminal proceedings under Texas Family Code § 54.02(a) if:
In such cases, a juvenile court will conduct a hearing without a jury to consider transfer of the child for criminal proceedings. The juvenile court must order and obtain a complete diagnostic study, social evaluation, and full investigation of the child, his or her circumstances, and the circumstances of the alleged offense before the hearing.
Texas Family Code § 54.02(f) also states that the court should consider all of the following (among other matters) in making its determination:
Juvenile Probation | Denton County, Texas — Visit this website to learn more about the Denton County Juvenile Probation Department. You can also find information about the Denton County Juvenile Detention Center, the Juvenile Mental Health Court, and Juvenile Probation Field Services. The website also has information about the Denton County Courage to Change Program (CTC) and Juvenile Impact Program.
Denton County Juvenile Probation Department
210 S. Woodrow Lane
Denton, TX 76205
City of Lewisville, TX | Teen Court — The Lewisville/Flower Mound Teen Court is an alternative, voluntary program that offers young offenders an opportunity to make restitution for an offense through community service, specialized classes, and jury service, allowing them to avoid fines and keep their record clear. Participation is limited to youths who have committed Class C misdemeanor offenses within city limits and were issued citations. Participants must plead guilty or no contest.
Lewisville Municipal Court
1197 West Main Street
Lewisville, Texas 75029
Were you or your child detained for an alleged juvenile offense in Denton County? You will want to contact Law Offices of Richard C. McConathy as soon as possible.
Richard McConathy and Brian Bolton are experienced criminal defense attorneys in Denton who represent minors all over Denton County, including Little Elm, Lewisville, Highland Village, Flower Mound, Argyle, The Colony, and many other nearby communities. You can have our lawyers review your case and help you understand all of your legal options when you call 940-222-8004 or complete an online contact form to take advantage of a free initial consultation.