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Ely, Counselor at Law
Category: Criminal Law
Satisfied Customers: 102141
Experience:  Private practice with focus on family, criminal, PI, consumer protection, and business consultation.
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Last evening my son was involved in taking of some possesions

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Last evening my son was involved in taking of some possesions from a car not belonging to him. He was driving and had four other friends with him in his vehicle. One of the other buddies stole a cell phone and it was witnessed by some other people in the neighborhood. All four were ticketed and need to appear in court on 7/6/2010. My question is how do I go about moving this from adult court to juvenile court?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Criminal Law
Expert:  Ely replied 7 years ago.

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Does he have any priors?

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
NO he has never done anything like this prior. Also, he is 16 years old.
Expert:  Ely replied 7 years ago.
Okay. My second and last question - have you hired an attorney for him or will you have a court appointed?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
well that is a question I have too. Was told to call for a public defender today vs paying for an attorney
Expert:  Ely replied 7 years ago.
What is your question - how is it determined if he can pay and is a public defender a good option?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
yes! Also heard if moved to juvy we could make this a sealed record?
Expert:  Ely replied 7 years ago.
Okay, hang on - you're hitting me with new ones while I am scrambling to answer the old ones. :)I always prefer a private attorney. Public defenders ARE good attorneys, but they don't really care about your son. Nor do they generally return calls or try very hard...mostly. They get paid per hour no matter what, so it's kind of like working with a donkey - you have to push so hard for them to move and do anything out of the ordinary. They'll just try to talk you into a deal.The Court determines your financial situation either by a few questions or by a financial affidavit he'll submit. However, if he has no money but CAN work, the Judge will say, "Go work at McDonald's if you have to," and would reset the case to have him find one. So he will get one or more resets to find an attorney - before even pleading, he can ask for a reset to find an attorney and they'll grant him one. Thing is, they don't like using public funds if the person is capable of working.Now, as for getting him into juvie court, the attorney has to file a motion to do so. You can't do it yourself, so that's up to counsel. The Judge will likely agree.He is a good candidate for something called deferred adjudication. Deferred adjudication (also known in some counties as "diversion") is a type of probation that does not go on his record as a conviction. The probationary period usually consists of community hours, a few self-improvement classes geared towards the offense, drug tests, etc. Time period varies depending on charge and deal worked out with the defense. Now, def.adj. does go on his record, but not as a conviction, and once he completes it, it can be wiped from his record either with a Motion for Expungement or Motion for Sealing of Record (depending on your state). Have your attorney ask for this, or ask himself if for some reason he is not afforded an attorney and choose not to retain counsel. This is a good program, and the worst thing the DA can say is “no,” but even then, they begin talking about bringing the charges down, etc. You’ll be surprised how willing the DA will be to work with him – they often have a full docket and they’ll be happy to “move” your case to make room for more serious matters.

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