With juvenile crimes the youthful offender will appear and delinquency court. Those who appear in delinquency court are alleged offenders under the age of 18. Delinquency court does not involve a jury, as their case will be heard by a delinquency court judge.
While awaiting the delinquency court hearing for their alleged offense or offenses it would not be held in jail, but they can be held in a juvenile detention facility or be remanded to their parents or guardians care.
It is important to understand that the goal of the adult court is punishment, the juvenile court system is set up for rehabilitation. So, a child can be charged with any crime from a yard fight to even murder, and still be tried in delinquency court. If found guilty of a crime as a juvenile you will not face incarceration such as jail or prison, however, you may be detained for up to 21 days. Most juvenile offenders are put on probation and may typically have the juvenile record sealed.
A youthful offender could also be put into a program by the department of juvenile justice where you could be taken away from your home for up to one year. The facilities could include either a secured facility or on secured facility depending on the seriousness of the nature of the juvenile offense. If the offense you committed was serious enough and you are put in the department of juvenile justice program, these records may be used against you as an adult.
Juvenile criminal records are not available to the public, and at the age of 21, you may ask the court to remove them from the core record. While some people may mistakenly believe that these records are completely out of view of everyone, law enforcement and prosecutors will still have access to these records and may use them against you if you commit additional crimes as an adult. Essentially, the removal of these records pertains to public view, not law enforcement view.
Michael S. Brown, Esquire has been an attorney in the Orlando area for over 13 years. He was a prosecutor for over 5 years with the State Attorney’s Office in Orange and Osceola County. There, he handled misdemeanor cases, juvenile cases, felony cases, felony violations of probation, and litigated over 20 jury trials.
Mr. Brown left the State Attorney’s Office to become a civil litigator in the areas of foreclosure, breaches of contract, and insurance defense. He has practiced in Courts throughout the State.
Mr. Brown is admitted to practice in every Court in the State of Florida. He is a member of the Florida Bar and all 3 federal courts in Florida.