The Code of Juvenile Justice in New Jersey distinguishes between adult crimes and charges of juvenile delinquency. Therefore, juveniles are not arrested but instead taken into custody. If a charge against a juvenile is proven, they are not convicted. Instead, a juvenile who is charged and proven to be guilty of a delinquency is adjudicated delinquent.
How Cases Are Screened and Scheduled
When it comes to juvenile crimes in Egg Harbor Township, NJ, cases are screened and scheduled under an informal calendar or formal calendar. Matters placed under an informal calendar are less serious and may include charges like criminal mischief or shoplifting. If these violations are repeated, they may be listed under a formal calendar for review by the court.
Matters Listed on the Informal Calendar
Matters that are reviewed on an informal calendar are not considered serious enough to warrant incarceration. Therefore, the judicial system does not necessitate that people with matters placed under an informal calendar be represented by an attorney. However, it is still wise to ask for legal counsel as the right to counsel is permitted for juvenile crimes considered less serious.
Matters Listed on the Formal Calendar
Matters listed on the formal calendar do require legal representation. For example, the Law Office of Mark D. Kargman, Esquire handles these matters in New Jersey.
Just as the adult charges, a number of constitutional protections are provided for individuals involved in juvenile crimes. Two of the main protections include the following:
* A presumption of innocence
* The need for the state to prove the charge beyond a reasonable doubt
Juvenile Cases Are Only Heard by a Judge
Any charges in juvenile court are heard and decided solely by a judge. Juries do not hear and decide juvenile cases. Also, juveniles who are awaiting trial and placed in detention cannot be released on bail.
As you can see, a juvenile charge leads to a different process than when an individual is charged with an adult criminal offense. Whether a charge is considered less serious or serious, it is in your best interest to consult with an attorney immediately.
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