Most Texans are fully aware that like Arizona and Florida, Texas has some of the harshest penalties for crimes in the nation. With that in mind, many parents automatically assume that the state’s juvenile justice system must be equally harsh, however, that is not the case.
If you previously thought that the state’s juvenile justice system was similar to the adult system, we have good news: it is not as tough as the adult system.
There are definitely similarities between the adult penal system and the juvenile justice system, for example, both systems focus on accountability, and both systems take the public’s safety into account.
While the adult system focuses on punishment for criminal behaviors, the juvenile system focuses on one key aspect that distinguishes it from the adult system – rehabilitation.
Sometimes youth make BIG mistakes, and sometimes these mistakes require them to be removed from society. Even in the most serious cases when youth are incarcerated, the state does not focus on punishment.
Instead, the state tries to protect youth and educate them about values, integrity, work ethics, and discipline. The whole purpose is to rehabilitate juvenile offenders so they can become productive citizens.
What Happens to Juvenile Records?
Most adults agree that people make a lot of mistakes when they are young and impressionable, especially during the teen years. While some teens get into a lot of trouble, that does not mean that they cannot learn from their mistakes and grown into productive members of society.
Fortunately, the courts understand that youth can succumb to peer pressure and make bad choices on their own. In an effort to protect the future of our youth, the courts seal most juvenile records. This way, youth are given a second chance without a criminal record following them into adulthood.
There are exceptions to the above rule, particularly when youth are required to register as a sex offender, or when their offense is so serious that they must complete their sentence in the adult system.
If your son or daughter was arrested in Plano or Dallas, we urge you to contact Zendeh Del Law Firm, PLLC, to arrange a consultation.