This is the next post in my discussion on the handling of criminal charges against Austin, Texas juveniles. My last article explained that the U.S. Constitution protects juveniles against an unreasonable search or seizure. Too often, parents make the mistake of thinking there is nothing they can do after their son or daughter has been arrested. The truth of the matter, however, is that if law enforcement violated your child’s rights then you will have options. It is important to discuss your situation with a defense lawyer in order to fully understand those options. In this article I will discuss a situation which occurs far too often – juvenile charges which involve the possession or distribution of drugs. If you or a loved one are in need of assistance then contact my office today to speak with an attorney.
It is common for children to be arrested for the possession of marijuana, prescription narcotics, or other such controlled substances. The increasing popularity of THC “vaping” exposes kids to felony-level charges, unlike possession of marijuana in plant form. How the court proceeds in such matters will depend on the child’s history. If your son or daughter has no prior record, and is doing well in school, then the court is much more likely to grant probation. This means that the child would be under supervision for a period of time and may have to complete some form of counseling. The case would then be closed upon the child’s completion of probation. If, however, the child has been displaying problems in school, is failing academically, and has a prior record, then the court may take firmer action. It is important to remember that the goal of the juvenile system is to put a child on the right path, and not to punish. This means that a court will often give a child every chance to succeed and will often only resort to placement outside the home if the Judge deems it necessary. How the Court will rule in any given situation, however, will always depend on the specific facts of the case.
If the child is caught possessing “harder” drugs (such as methamphetamine or heroin) then the judge is likely to be far more concerned. Any allegation of distribution (even just sharing prescription pills with friends or classmates), can result in felony-level charges which carry much harsher potential consequences. Under such circumstances it is likely that the court will impose stricter terms of supervision. Being proactive by coming up with a treatment plan to address substance-abuse or mental-health issues is very important; if the judge feels that the family is trying in good faith to address the child’s issues, the judge is much less likely to impose conditions that could involve placement outside the home.
I cannot stress enough the fact that you need to contact an experienced attorney immediately if your family finds itself in such a situation.
If your son or daughter has been arrested then contact my office today to speak with an Austin juvenile defense lawyer. I have been licensed since 1995 and am Board Certified in Criminal Law by the Texas Board of Legal Specialization. I pride myself on providing the highest levels of service and I am ready to assist you.
I also serves the cities of Rollingwood, Round Rock, Elgin, Jonestown, Manor, Bee Cave, Lago Vista, Sunset Valley, Lakeway, Creedmoor, Georgetown, Cedar Park, Leander, and San Marcos, Texas.