Charged With A Crime? It Doesn’t Mean You’re Guilty.

When Can a Juvenile Be Convicted of a Crime in Denver?

| Oct 31, 2018 | Juvenile |

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Juvenile Crime Conviction in Denver, Colorado

In some cases, but not all, juveniles in Denver, Colorado who have violated the law can be convicted of a crime, so long as they are at least 10 years old. Only when the juvenile is at least 16 years old, can the District Attorney file adult charges, where a conviction may result. This filing process is called a Direct File or Direct Filing. Recently, the Colorado governor signed a law into place which raised the age limit from 14 to 16 years old, when the DA may do a Direct File on a juvenile. The new law allows DAs to charge young kids as adults in murder, violent sex crimes, kidnapping and assaults which are violent. Juveniles charged via the Direct File can appeal to a district judge, who gets to say whether or not the child should be tried as an adult.

Adams County Crimes by Minors and Adjudication

Children under 16 who are charged with crimes like Sexual Assault on a Child, C.R.S. 18-3-405, in Adams County and Jefferson County, will be charged in juvenile court, where they can be adjudicated a juvenile delinquent. These kids will still need to aggressively defend themselves as if they were charged criminally. A sex offender juvenile adjudication still carries the same requirements of an adult conviction, such as sex offender treatment, probation, possible incarceration and Sex Offender Registration. In some cases, serious adjudication records cannot be expunged, so charges against children need to be treated seriously.

In C.R.S. 19-1-103, Adjudication is defined as “a determination by the court that it has been proven beyond a reasonable doubt to the trier of fact that the juvenile has committed a delinquent act or that a juvenile has pled guilty to committing a delinquent act. In addition, when a previous conviction must be pled and proven as an element of an offense or for purposes of sentence enhancement, “adjudication” means conviction.”

Direct Filing of Serious Offenses in Douglas County

An adjudication is less serious than an adult conviction, and the government’s options in sentencing are less severe. Under the new law in Colorado, only the most serious offenses are subject to a Direct File. Prosecutors are not happy, but kids now have a greater likelihood of staying in juvenile court when they commit more serious crimes.

Juvenile Crime Defense Lawyer in Arapahoe County

If Arapahoe County police contact your child, be smart, exercise your child’s right to remain silent, and contact our experienced juvenile lawyers at 303-731-0719. Call us today to set up a free initial consultation, or to schedule a visit to a youth detention center. Together, we can protect your child’s future.

Read more about Juvenile charges.