As an adult, you can attest that young people entering adolescence face lots of changes. They gain responsibilities and liberties for which not every young person is ready. They become much more dependent upon the opinions and suggestions of their friends. Also, puberty presents youth with powerful new feelings beyond their coping skills.
Sometimes these factors contribute to youth facing some sort of criminal charge. Since raising adolescent children by itself is a challenge to parents, legal action against your son or daughter can be extremely disconcerting. You may find it helpful to learn a few basic facts about juvenile justice.
These Are of the Five Most Common Criminal Charges Against Juveniles
While you may read about young people charged with more serious offenses, these are the more common accusations brought against youth:
- Theft, including shoplifting
- Destruction of property, including writing graffiti
- Underage drinking
- Inappropriate behavior, including fights, indecent exposure or disorderly conduct
- Physical or virtual bullying
Arkansas Law Has Special Provisions for Juveniles
You may know that the state has a separate juvenile justice system for young people between 10 and 18 years old. The intentional goal of Arkansas’ Division of Youth Services (DYS) is to work proactively with young people before they legally become adults. There is a highly functional protocol available to help juvenile offenders deal with legal problems successfully.
As a parent, you also may want to know that the state’s goal is to resolve and hopefully expunge any criminal charges against a young person before he or she becomes an adult.