JUVENILE LAW COURT PROCEDURES IN CALIFORNIA
your child has been arrested, he or
she can either be cited and released
or detained at a juvenile detention
facility. If your child is in custody,
he or she will be arraigned in juvenile
court within 48 hours, excluding weekends
and holidays. (WIC 632)
If your child is in custody, his or
her first court date is called
a detention hearing. At the detention
hearing the juvenile referee or juvenile
judge will make a determination on
whether to continue to detain your
child pending adjudication of the
charges. The juvenile referee or juvenile
judge will have input from the juvenile
probation department, as well as from
the juvenile deputy district attorney
and juvenile defense attorney.
The criteria used by most juvenile
judges on whether to continue to detain
your child pending adjudication are
is reasonably necessary for the
protection of the person or property
of another that your child be
a matter of immediate and urgent
necessity for the protection
of your child that he or she be
your child is a flight risk and
will not appear in court.
your child has violated a prior
At the juvenile detention hearing
your child's attorney will enter a
plea admitting or denying the petition.
Most attorneys will deny the petition
pending evaluation of the states case.
your child is detained, he or she
has a right to a speedy trial to take
place within 15 court days of the
arraignment. If your child is not
in custody, the speedy trial requires
an adjudication date within 30 calendar
days. (WIC 657)
JUVENILE ARRAIGNMENT DATE
your child is not on custody, his
first court date is called arraignment.
Your child's attorney will often enter
a denial of the petition and set a
pretrial and a court date.
JUVENILE PRETRIAL DATE
pretrial date is set up so the attorneys
of both parties can discuss a possible
resolution to the case and to discuss
other outstanding discovery issues.
If your child is in custody, this
must be set up the week following
the arraignment unless time is waived.
In other words the pretrail date or
even the court trail date, can be
set at a much later date if your child's
attorney and your child agree to a
later date. If your child is not in
custody, his/her pretrial must generally
be scheduled two to three weeks after
the arraignment unless time is waived.
Many juvenile judges participate in
a discussion of a resolution though
a private conference in the judges
JUVENILE COURT TRIAL
adult court, your child is not entitled
to a jury trial. In lieu of twelve
jurors, the juvenile court trials
are done by a judge or commissioner
who acts as both judge and trier of
fact. Therefore it is very important
that you have a lawyer that is familiar
with the juvenile court proceedings
and the juvenile court judges. Under
code of civil procedure 170.6, your child has a
right to an unbiased judge. Your child
has to challenge the judges impartiality
immediately otherwise he or she can
be deemed to have waived that right.
Only an experienced juvenile attorney
will know which juvenile judges or
juvenile commissioners are fair.
Welfare and Institutions Code Section 602
WIC 602 states in relevant part, "(a) Except as provided in subdivision (b), any person who is under the age of 18 years when he or she violates any law of this state or of the United States or any ordinance of any city or county of this state defining crime other than an ordinance establishing curfew based sole on age, is within the jurisdiction of the juvenile court, which may adjudge such person to be a ward of the court."
Your child probably was cited to appear before a juvenile court with a notation WIC 602 and the applicable penal code charge that he or she allegedly violated. It is the juvenile prosecutor who files the petition to declare your child a ward of the juvenile court under Welfare & Institutions Code section 602. At court, the judge will make a finding of whether the child is described by Welfare and Institutions Code section 602.
Call our office to retain an experienced juvenile lawyer today
Law Offices of George Kita can help
make sure that your child's rights
are protected to get the best legal
result possible. Mr. Kita is an experienced juvenile defense lawyer. He has successfully handled more than 1000 juvenile cases. Call for a FREE
consultation at 626-232-0970 or
email our office at email@example.com