Has your child been charged with a juvenile crime in Bensalem, PA? He could face juvenile detention, fines, and even jail, not to mention a permanent black mark on his record that may affect his ability to get into college, join the military, or find a job. A criminal defense lawyer in Bensalem, PA from McKenzie Law Firm, P.C. can help your child move past these charges with his future intact.
Our juvenile criminal defense team is led by criminal defense attorney David McKenzie. Once a criminal prosecutor, David understands how the other side works and is prepared for any tactics they might use. Our team fights for your child’s rights to protect his future. We also offer a free initial case evaluation. To discuss your case with a member of our team, call us at 610-680-7842.
Do Not Let a Criminal Conviction Jeopardize Your Child’s Future
A juvenile can face charges for any crime for which an adult can face charges. An additional set of laws applies to minors only, regarding underage drinking, school attendance, and so forth. A conviction in juvenile court can result in probation, fines, juvenile detention, and loss of your child’s driver’s license. If the case ends up in adult court, the penalties can be much more severe.
The McKenzie Law Firm, P.C. defends juveniles charged with any of the following, and more:
- Attempted murder
- Car theft
- Drug possession
- Possession of fake ID
- Sale of drugs
- Underage consumption
We Fight to Protect Your Child from Being Tried as an Adult
In certain cases in Pennsylvania, juveniles can be tried in adult court. This is the last thing you want for your child, and we do everything possible to make sure it does not happen.
While a juvenile conviction is never ideal, your child can have his record expunged upon becoming an adult, as long as he continues to stay out of trouble. But a conviction in adult court could imperil his future.
If your child’s case risks a referral to adult court, we have a number of tools our juvenile criminal defense lawyer in Bensalem can use to fight it and will do so aggressively.
Create Reasonable Doubt and Protect Your Child From a Conviction
In juvenile as well as in adult court, we do not have to prove your child’s innocence. When we create reasonable doubt as to his guilt, we can prevent the prosecution from satisfying its burden of proof. This should result in an acquittal or the charges being dropped.
This is where David McKenzie’s experience as a prosecutor is a major asset to your child’s case. Having worked for the other side, he knows where to find weaknesses in the prosecution’s case and use them to protect your child’s rights in the juvenile court system.
We Fight for Alternative Justice Instead of Jail
While an acquittal is always our top priority, we can help your child even in situations where the prosecution has overwhelming evidence for his guilt. In these cases, we fight for alternative justice rather than jail or juvenile detention.
Depending on the nature of the crime, alternative justice could involve drug or alcohol rehab, anger management therapy, mental health counseling, community service, or restitution to the victim.
We offer a free consultation to discuss your child’s case and determine how alternative justice may be an option. Call us today to see what a juvenile criminal defense attorney in Bensalem can do for your child’s case: 610-680-7842.
If Your Child Is Eligible to Be Tried as an Adult, We Fight It
Minors are tried in separate courts from adults. The penalties for a conviction in juvenile court are usually less severe than the penalties for conviction of the same crime in adult court. Also, as long as the child meets certain requirements and avoids future trouble, juvenile crimes are sealed or expunged upon becoming an adult.
This system of separate juvenile and adult courts exists because, as a society, we believe youthful mistakes should not follow you forever or prevent you from becoming a productive, successful adult.
In certain situations, however, juveniles in Pennsylvania are tried in adult court. Based on your child’s age and the charges, the prosecution may ask for either a discretionary or presumptive waiver to have the case moved from juvenile court.
If your child is 14 years or older and faces felony charges, the prosecution can ask for a discretionary waiver to have the case moved to adult court. It is called “discretionary” because the court has discretion over whether to move it.
The prosecution can apply for a presumptive waiver if your child is facing charges for certain crimes. Rather than the court having discretion, it presumes the case should be moved upon the prosecution’s request.
Although a presumptive waiver is more challenging to fight than a discretionary waiver, we have the tools to do so and our track record is solid.
Presumptive waivers apply to the following situations:
- Your child is at least 14 and is charged with a felony involving a deadly weapon.
- Your child is at least 15 and faces charges of attempted murder, solicitation of murder, or manslaughter.
- Your child is at least 15 and is charged with rape, aggravated assault, kidnapping, robbery, or conspiracy to commit one of these crimes.
Our team can fight the prosecution’s discretionary or presumptive waiver request to keep your child’s case out of adult court.
The Bensalem juvenile criminal defense team at McKenzie Law Firm, P.C. wants to help your child move past the charges he is facing and get his life back. We offer a free case evaluation. Call 610-680-7842 today to see how a juvenile criminal defense lawyer in Bensalem can help you.