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Mr. Tumelty represented Helena Hendricks, who was charged with first degree murder in Atlantic County Superior Court. The defendant faced a number of additional charges, including armed robbery, conspiracy and possession of a handgun for an unlawful purpose. At the conclusion of a jury trial that lasted three weeks, the defendant was found "not guilty" of all charges.

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4 Ways Juvenile Crimes Will Follow You Forever

teenager gets arrested

The New Jersey juvenile justice system is geared toward giving juvenile offenders a chance to learn from their mistakes, with the legal system emphasizing rehabilitation and reform instead of more disciplinary measures. This means that a person under the age of 18 can typically avoid being charged with a felony-level offense that would otherwise carry prison time and other serious penalties if the offender was charged as an adult.

However, a young adult who is charged with an act of juvenile delinquency in NJ still faces severe consequences, including incarceration in a juvenile detention center, heavy monetary fines, suspension of driver’s license, and mandatory community service.

Additionally, a juvenile crime could leave you with a record that haunts you well into adulthood. Although the record of your juvenile conviction won’t be made available to everyone, it will still be possible for certain individuals and agencies to see that you were convicted of a juvenile offense.

Here are a few of the ways that a juvenile crime conviction could follow you in the future:

1. You may not be able to get a job in law enforcement.

N.J.S.A. 2A:4A-60 stipulates that New Jersey law enforcement agencies will be granted access to an applicant’s juvenile records. This could make it difficult to get a job as a police officer for example.

2. You may have difficulty getting a job in the criminal justice system.

Information about your juvenile charge, as well as the adjudication and disposition of that charge, will also be made available to judicial agencies that file a motion for good cause.

3. You could be kicked out of school.

School principals, and other school officials, can request information about a student’s past arrest or conviction when the information is necessary for safety or disciplinary matters.

4. Your fingerprints and DNA will be placed on file.

Juveniles who are found to be delinquent are typically required to provide fingerprints and a DNA sample to authorities.

Although the record of your juvenile arrest and conviction is not automatically erased when you turn 18 years of age, you may be able to get your juvenile record expunged or sealed. Depending on the circumstances of your case and the nature of your charges, an experienced criminal defense attorney can potentially file a petition for expungement. This will have the effect of ensuring that your juvenile record remains confidential.

Talk to an Experienced Attorney

If your child has been charged with a juvenile crime in NJ, you need a skilled criminal defense lawyer fighting to protect their rights. The experienced, aggressive criminal defense attorneys at the Law Offices of John W. Tumelty can contest the charges and help your son or daughter avoid the most severe penalties. Contact us immediately to schedule a free initial consultation at 609-390-4600 or fill out the form below.

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