Can Your Child Be Charged As an Adult for Murder in California?

We all raise our children in the hopes that they’ll grow up to be happy and successful. We never expect to raise our children to be criminals. However, things happen. Just because your child has been charged with a crime doesn’t mean he’s a bad person. People make mistakes. And, kids make more mistakes than adults. They can be charged with either a misdemeanor or a felony.

If your child has been charged with murder, you’re probably afraid and worried. You don’t know where to turn, and have no idea what’s going to happen to your child. You’ll need to call a San Diego defense attorney.

California was one of the states known for treating juveniles as adults when it came to certain criminal charges. If a child was charged with rape or murder in San Diego, they could be charged and tried as an adult. It didn’t matter how young they were. Being tried as an adult meant a few things:

  • Your child will face adult penalties
  • He will have to go to an adult prison if found guilty
  • He’ll be held to the same standards as an adult

The reason children are expected to be treated differently is because they aren’t fully formed adults. They don’t think like grown ups. They aren’t mature enough to understand the consequences of their actions.

Until recently, children in San Diego, California were allowed to be tried as adults no matter what their age. This means that your 13 or 14-year old child could have faced life in prison of charged with murder.

This all changed with a new bill passed in 2018.

The Law in California Regarding Juveniles Has Changed

Attorneys in San Diego had gotten used to dealing with juvenile clients being charged as adults. They had learned how to explain to parents that their middle-school child was going to be facing life in prison.

District attorneys in San Diego were allowed to treat children charged with crimes such as rape or murder as adults. They faced adult charges and were given adult sentences. They were sent to actual prisons rather than juvenile detention centers.

As of last year, the law in California had changed. A bill was passed prohibiting children under 16-years old from being treated as adults. Regardless of the charges, they had to be treated as juveniles. This is a big change from how it used to be.

Bill 1391 was passed in September of 2018. It prevents juveniles 15 years old or younger from being transferred to adult prisons. This applies to kids charged with serious crimes like murder, arson and rape. It also prohibits kids under 12 years old from being charged with any felony, with the exception of rape or murder.

What This Means for Your Child

If your son or daughter has been charged with murder in California, you’re going to need a San Diego defense attorney. Even though the new law prevents your kid from being treated like an adult, that doesn’t mean they won’t be found guilty.

The good news, however, is that you won’t have to worry about them being locked up with adults in state or federal prison.

Now, don’t get the wrong idea. Juvenile detention centers are no cake walk. They can be very dangerous. It’s certainly not a place you want your child to be. This means you need a good criminal defense lawyer to help get the charges against your child reduced or dismissed.

Your San Diego defense attorney knows how to help your child in court. He can talk to the prosecutor and try to get the charges reduced or dismissed. He can point out that certain evidence can’t be used in court due to an illegal search or seizure, and demonstrate why it’s impossible that your child is guilty.

Call a San Diego Defense Attorney Today

If your son or daughter has been charged with rape or murder in San Diego, you need help. Call an experienced San Diego defense attorney today. He can review your case and see what defenses are available. He can try to negotiate a plea deal with the prosecutor.

Call and schedule your initial consultation today. Your child can still be facing some pretty serious charges. You need the best defense lawyer you can find.