New Jersey youths who fail to attend school could be charged with truancy if their absences are unexcused. Although federal law states that minors can't be incarcerated for being truant, judges at the state level may elect to send them to jails or detention centers if they don't comply with probation orders or exhibit further truant behavior after being formally cautioned.
Many young people who are not of legal drinking age are charged with driving under the influence in New Jersey each year. It is important for young people to understand how the law in the state treats underage drinking and driving.
Many young people in New Jersey enter into the juvenile justice system each year. As there has been an increasing drive to sentence kids to alternatives to detention, an increasing number are placed on juvenile probation. There are some indications that juvenile probation does not always work, and it may actually do some kids more harm than good.
According to reports, a recent drug search and sweep of Ridge High School in Bernards Township resulted in only one student being detained for allegedly possessing drugs. The search reportedly occurred at the high school on Feb. 13, and involved the use of K-9 dogs, officers and checks of the parking lot as well as hallway lockers.
Parents of children who are facing juvenile delinquency proceedings in New Jersey may be concerned about their children's futures and what penalties they may face. Judges in juvenile courts are mostly concerned with rehabilitation of the children and teenagers they deal with, and dispositions for juvenile crimes often focus on preventing future offenses.
When someone is convicted of a graffiti violation in New Jersey, he or she will normally have a fourth degree crime on their record. Violations bring a variety of potential penalties that the court can impose, including a jail sentence, community service and restitution to the defaced property's owner.
Sen. Cory Booker may be relatively new to the Senate, but that doesn't mean that he is taking things slowly. The freshman senator from New Jersey has recently announced that he and Rand Paul will be co-sponsoring a bill that would make it easier to expunge the records of nonviolent juvenile offenders. Since a criminal record can seriously hinder a young person's opportunities, even a record for something as minor as drug possession, this kind of legislation could go a long way to help young people.
Earlier in the week we talked about young people's ability to understand their Miranda rights. We also discussed the proclivity teenagers have for waiving their rights to silence and to have a criminal defense lawyer present during questioning. Although some people may not see a problem in this as it is getting juvenile "delinquents" off the streets, it can be quite problematic when these teenagers confess to things they have never done.
When someone confesses to a crime, it is often seen as a slam dunk for prosecutors. If the individual confessed, it means he or she did the crime, right? Well, it is not always that straightforward. If it is a teenager, chances are the confession is more a product of stress, confusion or fear than it is an actual admission of guilt. If a teenager or college student is charged with a crime in Mercer County, it is very possible that he or she will confess to a crime he or she did not commit.