Thursday, March 30, 2023

5 Common Juvenile Crimes in Georgia

Bipper Media

Criminal activity might seem like an adult’s game, but in reality, children can commit crimes just as prolifically as their elders. If a juvenile you love has been accused of a crime, make sure they have the best representation possible and contact Jarrett Maillet J.D., P.C., today.

What Are Juvenile Crimes?

Simply put, a juvenile crime is any crime committed by a juvenile that is subsequently tried in juvenile court. 

Such crimes are often met with more forgiving sentences than if they were committed by an adult. The general attitude towards juvenile consequences is to punish and correct the behavior before the child reaches adulthood, at which point their juvenile record will likely be sealed, so they may go out into the world with a clean slate. 

Who Are Juveniles? 

Juveniles, as a legal term in Georgia, refers to persons between the ages of 13 and 17. It’s important to note that the juvenile age range begins at 13. That’s because anyone under this age is considered too young to possess the criminal intent required for a delinquent act.

Crimes committed by children in this range are considered juvenile crimes and treated differently than crimes committed by adults. In fact, the entire juvenile court system differs vastly from that of the superior or magistrate courts. 

There are, of course, a variety of extenuating circumstances that may lead to a juvenile within this age range being tried as an adult. 

Why Would A Juvenile Be Tried As An Adult?

Trying a juvenile as an adult means that the juvenile’s case will be held in an adult court, rather than a juvenile court, and the consequences should the juvenile be convicted will reflect those as stated by law for adults, rather than the more lenient sentences reserved for children. 

The simplest reason a juvenile might be tried as an adult would be if they committed the crime the day before they turned 17. Another might be frequency; for example, a juvenile over the age of 15 charged with burglary for the 4th time will be tried as an adult. Similarly, a juvenile over the age of 14 who commits a violent crime while already in juvenile custody must be tried as an adult. 

The severity of the crime is the most common reason a juvenile may be tried as an adult. The juvenile court maintains the right to transfer minors 15 years of age or older to adult court, depending on the case and related circumstances. Similarly, juveniles 13 years or older may also be transferred should they commit a crime considered to be extreme, such as murder, rape, child molestation, armed robbery, etc. 

Juveniles who are at least 15 years of age and who commit crimes that, outside juvenile court, would be considered a felony, could also be tried as adults. In such cases, the court may either proceed with the case or transfer the case to juvenile court. 

However, while much of this depends on the judge’s discretion, any juveniles over the age of 13 who commit a crime that carries either the death penalty or a life sentence must automatically be tried as adults. 

The 5 Most Common Juvenile Crimes in Georgia

While extreme cases in which children are tried as adults are often the ones you hear about on the news, they are not the most common. Crimes committed by juveniles are often significantly less severe:

  1. Property Crimes: This includes crimes such as theft and vandalism.
  2. Assault and Battery: This includes affray charges, in which multiple people engage in a fight in public.
  3. Offenses Against Public Order: These crimes include anything that disturbs the “peace, public morals, or public decency,” such as disorderly conduct, rioting, public indecency, vagrancy, loitering, gang activity, solicitation, obscenity, and cruelty to animals.
  4. Probation Violations: Probation requirements can be extensive and easy to violate by juveniles who have already been convicted of a crime.
  5. Drug Crimes: Any crimes related to the illegal use, possession, procurement, production, and/or distribution of illicit substances such as marijuana, opiates, methamphetamines, etc.

What to Do If A Juvenile You Love Has Been Charged with a Juvenile Crime

If a child in your life has been accused of a crime or has been charged with a crime, it’s time to contact Jarrett Maillet, J.D., P.C. A seasoned juvenile defense attorney with experience on both sides of the courtroom, Maillet will work tirelessly to help you build the best possible defense. Don’t wait! Contact us today for a free consultation.

Jarrett Maillet J.D., P.C.
210 E 31st St
Savannah, GA 31401




Attorney Jarrett Maillet
Attorney Jarrett Maillethttps://www.mailletcriminallaw.com/
At Jarrett Maillet J.D., P.C. we bring over 10 years of experience in the field of criminal law.

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