West Des Moines Juvenile Justice Attorney
Our criminal justice system acknowledges that minors lack the capacity and maturity to be held fully responsible for their actions. A child should not suffer the life-long impact of a criminal record for things they did as a child. West Des Moines juvenile justice attorney Nicholas Dial works to ensure that juveniles accused of crimes get a fair defense and that their case has a fair disposition. Contact the Dial Law Office, P.C., if you would like to discuss your case at (515) 309-2200.
Iowa’s Juvenile Justice System
When minors are accused of crimes in Iowa, their cases are usually handled by a juvenile court. These cases are considered “delinquency cases” rather than criminal cases. When a juvenile is found to have committed a crime, they will receive an “adjudication of delinquency” rather than a conviction. This is an important distinction, because a juvenile with an adjudication of delinquency does not technically have a criminal record.
Moreover, juvenile criminal records can be sealed. Once a record is sealed, it essentially ceases to exist as a matter of law. Although juvenile courts and other agencies may keep the records on file, those records will not be publicly available, appear on a criminal background check, or be available to law enforcement.
Importantly, prosecutors may be able to prosecute a minor as an adult in some cases. Iowa law allows the prosecution of minors over the age of 14 as adults in violent cases. A minor over the age of 16 that commits a violent felony is automatically tried as an adult in Iowa; however, in these cases, a judge has the discretion to move a case to juvenile court if it is in the interest of justice to do so.
A Commitment to Juvenile Justice
The Dial Law Office, P.C., is committed to ensuring that juveniles accused of crimes are treated fairly by Iowa’s criminal justice system. Just like any adult that is charged with a crime, every juvenile that is prosecuted in an Iowa juvenile court has a right to a fair trial and an effective defense. West Des Moines juvenile justice attorney Nicholas Dial is dedicated to vigorously defending the rights of his juvenile clients and getting the best possible outcome in each case.
For More Information, Contact the Dial Law Office, P.C.
Attorney Nicholas Dial offers thorough, accessible, and compassionate service. He also offers free consultations. If you would like more information about this issue, or if you would like to discuss your case, contact the Dial Law Office, P.C., at 800-603-6839 today.