The Potential Benefits Of Trying Kids In Adult Courts

Law Blog

Many people agree that children should not be tried in adult courts. There are many reasons for this; for example, convictions in adult courts usually result in stricter sentences and may make a child serve time in an adult prison. However, if you fail to keep your child's trial to a juvenile court, then you may root for or take solace in these advantages of trying minors in adult courts.

Jury Trial

In many states, minors do not have the right to a jury trial. However, minors who are tried in adult courts are treated as adults, which mean they have the right to be tried by a jury. Trial by jury may be advantageous because:

•    It reduces the risk of getting a biased judgment because it is difficult (but not impossible) for 12 people to be biased as a unit.

•    Usually results in few appeals (many people believe juries are usually right), which is good if you win the case.

•    Elected judges may be swayed by political sentiments, but not jurors.

•    Jurors trying minor offenders may be more sympathetic than the judge who may believe that a crime is a crime no matter who commits it.

Possibility of Faster Trials

If your child has is being tried in an adult court, then his or her case may be expedited. This is likely to be the case if:

•    your jurisdiction has a backlog of cases

•    the jurisdiction's jails are crowded

•    the child is facing relatively minor charges 

The court may decide to hasten the case, and get it out of the way so that it can concentrate on other "more serious" cases. In fact, the child may even receive a lighter sentence; for example, by plea bargaining to reduced charges and avoiding trial altogether.

Punishment and Example for Serious Crimes

Minors who commit serious or violent crimes, such as murder or robbery with violence, may sometimes need to face strict punishments for them to see the error of their ways. This is even more necessary for a child who has been involved in multiple serious offenses. Allowing him or her to get away with a crime each time may only encourage his or her criminal actions further. Unlike adult courts, juvenile courts are more likely to be lenient to kid perpetrators of serious crimes.

Note that the decision to try a kid as an adult lies with the judge. For example, he or she can exercise his or her right to waive the exclusive jurisdiction over the case. Alternatively, the prosecutor may petition the court for such a move. If the court moves the case to an adult court, then the child's lawyer may succeed in fighting for one of the advantages mentioned above, depending on what you want. For more information, speak with an attorney such as Craig H. Lane, PC.


12 March 2015

Business Law Basics: What Small Business Owners Need to Know

When I started my first small business, I had no idea how much I really didn’t know. I was fully prepared to deal with customers, sell product and even handle complaints and returns. What I wasn’t aware of was that there is so much more to it. I was lacking the legal expertise to protect the company and myself. I wanted others to benefit from my experience, mistakes and lessons learned, so I started this blog. From employment law to the legal business contracts you’ll have to sign when you form partnerships, business law is complex. I hope that the information here will help you to be better prepared when you start your business so that you’ll know when you need to call an attorney and when you can handle things yourself.