Juvenile Defense Lawyers

If your child has been accused of a delinquent act in juvenile court then contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the Law Office of Joel M. Mann. With offices in Las Vegas, Nevada, Joel Mann represents juveniles throughout Clark County, Nevada.

In some cases, the juvenile record can result in the child being expelled from his public or private middle school or high school, particularly when the crime occurred on the school bus or at the school. Many of the schools throughout Clark County have a zero tolerance policy, particularly for drug offenses or weapon charges. Other indirect consequences of a juvenile record can follow the child into adulthood even if the child is able to remain in his school.

Las Vegas Juvenile Defense Attorney

Any criminal accusation, even against a juvenile, is serious. Never allow your child to talk to a law enforcement officer about a criminal accusation until after you have retained an attorney. Joel M. Mann is an experienced criminal defense lawyer who helps his clients in both the juvenile courts and the adult criminal courts throughout Clark County and the greater Las Vegas area. Call Joel M. Mann to discuss the case and the best strategy to resolve the case.

Types of Juvenile Charges in Clark County, Nevada

The most common types of delinquent acts or crimes prosecuted in the juvenile courts throughout Clark County, Nevada, include:

  • Possession of marijuana or drug paraphernalia;
  • Criminal mischief of graffiti;
  • Shoplifting or theft;
  • Trespass;
  • Burglary or robbery;
  • Violation of probation;
  • Battery or other crimes of violence; or
  • Sexual misconduct with a younger child.

Returning the Child to the Parent’s Home

In most cases, the juvenile is immediately released to the parents after being taken into custody by law enforcement.

Depending on the child’s prior juvenile record or the seriousness of the charges, the juvenile may be detained pending a court appearance in juvenile court. At the hearing, the court can release the child to the parents.

In some cases, the court will utilize the Detention Review and Release Program. DRRP uses Home Management and Global Positioning Satellite (GPS) services to help monitor the child after he or she returns home. While the case is pending, the Department Probation Officers many conduct unannounced home, school, employment or community visits.

In the most serious cases, or when the child has a prior record or violated the terms of pre-hearing release or probation, the court can require the child to remain in detention for a period of time before the resolution of the case.

Transferring Juveniles to Adult Court

For most children accused of criminal wrongdoing, the juvenile division of the district court retains jurisdiction over children under the age of eighteen accused of committing delinquent acts. In Nevada, the prosecutor may decide to request that the court certify a juvenile for criminal proceedings as an adult pursuant to NRS 62B.390(1) if:

  • The juvenile is charged with an offense that would be a felony if committed by an adult; and
  • The juvenile is fourteen years old or older at the time of the offense.

Hiring an attorney to negotiate with the prosecutor to avoid the transfer or being prepared for the “certification proceeding” is the most important thing a parent can do at this early stage of the case. The criminal defense attorney can represent the child at this hearing called the “certification proceeding” to request the court to not make the transfer.

In determining whether the juvenile court should transfer the minor to adult court, the prosecutor must establish the charge’s prosecutive merit. This term “prosecutive merit” basically means “probable cause.” In other words, is there probable cause to believe that a crime occurred and that the person accused is the one who committed the crime.

If probable cause is found, then the court next determines whether the case should be transferred by reviewing a matrix of categories. The “matrix of categories” includes:

  • The nature and seriousness of the offense;
  • The seriousness of past admitted criminal offenses; and
  • The personal attributes and subjective features of the juvenile such as age, maturity, character, and strength of family relationships.

In juvenile certification proceedings, due process does not require an adversary hearing comparable to a preliminary examination. Id. The adversary hearing is not required because certification proceedings are generally dispositional and not adjudicatory in nature. Id.

The certification proceeding is comparable to adult probable cause proceedings, wherein judges may determine probable cause without an adversary hearing because this stage of the proceedings is one of limited function and nonadversary character. Gerstein v. Pugh, 420 U.S. 103, 120, 122, 95 S.Ct. 854, 43 L.Ed.2d 54 (1975). Thus, the courts have found that the certification proceeding represents a dispositional stage with the purpose of deciding which court should exercise jurisdiction over the matter.

Additional Resources for Juvenile Cases in Las Vegas, Nevada

  • Juvenile Detention Center in Las Vegas, Nevada – The Clark County Juvenile Detention Services acts as a holding facility for children who are between the age of 8 to 18 after an accusation of a delinquent act or a criminal act. The detention center division of the Department of Juvenile Justice Services (DJJS) is the largest division. The detention facially as a maximum bed capacity to hold up to one hundred ninety two (192) children. The Clark County School District also provides certain educational services on core subject areas.
  • Juvenile Detention Alternatives Initiative (JDAI) – The JDAI was created after the Detention Reform in 1992 by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. The initiative is implemented at the Department of Juvenile Justices Services in Las Vegas, Nevada. he initiative seeks to reduce the number of children being detained, minimize the failure of juveniles to appear in court, and help improve the conditions of juvenile confinement.
  • Juvenile Division of the Clark County District Attorney’s Office – The Juvenile Division of the Office of the District Attorney prosecutes children under the age of 18 for delinquent acts that would be criminal offenses if committed by an adult. The Juvenile Division of the DA’s office also uses its discretion to determine which juvenile cases should be transferred to adult court for prosecution.

Finding a Juvenile Defense Attorney in Las Vegas, NV

If your child was arrested or detained by law enforcement for any type of delinquent act or criminal offense, then contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at the Law Office of Joel M. Mann. Call (702) 474-6266 for a free and confidential consultation to discuss the allegations and the best way to fight the accusations while addressing the underlying behavior in an effective manner.