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Juvenile Criminal Cases and Court System In Arizona

Arizona has a juvenile court system that has been set up to handle criminal cases where the defendant is a minor. Not all minors will qualify to be a part of the juvenile court program; depending on the age of the defendant and the nature of the charges against him, a minor could be charged as either an adult or juvenile. The benefit to the juvenile court system is that it is far more forgiving than the criminal court system. The juvenile court system focuses on rehabilitation; judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, and probation officers all work closely with each other and with the parents and minor defendant to get the defendant back on track.

During the pendency of the case, the judge will get regular status updates from juvenile probation on the minor defendant’s progress. The judge is looking for signs of progress: obeying parents and teachers, improving grades, volunteer or community activities, whether the defendant is working, the defendant’s plans after high school and what they are doing to prepare for the future.

If the defendant is successful at the juvenile level, they will most likely be placed on a period of probation. Once they reach the age of majority, their juvenile records will be sealed.

If you are the parent of a child who has been accused of a crime, please call us today. Our attorneys are familiar with the juvenile process and will be happy to discuss your case with you at no charge.

A.R.S. §4-244 (34) Underage Drinking and Driving in AZ

According to the law known as A.R.S. §4-244 (34) Underage Drinking and Driving in AZ , it is illegal for anyone who is under the age of 21 to drive or be in physical control of a vehicle while there is any type of liquor in their body.

It doesn’t matter if the person is impaired by the alcohol, or not. This means, you could be completely sober and capable of driving, but still receive a violation if you have alcohol on your breath and are under the age of 21.

Penalties for Underage Drinking and Driving

In the state of Arizona, an underage DUI is also referred to as a Baby DUI. While the charges alone don’t require time in jail, this is typically on the case for first time offenders.

However, an individual facing these charges may still be sentenced by a judge for up to six months in jail. Other charges related to this offense include fines of up to $2,500, as well as an 84 percent surcharge. It’s also mandatory that the individuals license be suspended for a period of two years.

Legal Defenses for Underage Drinking and Driving Charges

If you are facing these charges, the best thing you can do is contact an attorney for help. They will likely go over some of the defenses for this situation, which include:

  • No reasonable suspicion for you to be stopped.
  • No actual physical control of the vehicle.
  • No probable cause for the arrest that was made.
  • The denial of a right to counsel.
  • An inaccuracy of the blood or breath testing device.
  • A violation of the person’s Miranda rights.
  • Incorrect or inaccurate police reports.

An attorney will be able to evaluate your case to determine if any of the above situations apply. In some cases, there are situations where more than one of the aforementioned defenses can be used. This is why it is so important to hire an attorney for assistance.

The Importance of Hiring an Attorney

If you are facing underage DUI charges, then the best thing you can do is hire a DUI defense attorney who understands all the possible defenses for your situation. Someone who is under the age of 21 has their entire life ahead. As a result, the last thing they need is to have a DUI conviction on their record, which can impact their reputation negatively and have adverse consequences for many years to come.

Finding the right attorney matters. Make sure to consider the options in the local area and their knowledge of Arizona laws. A quality attorney will be willing to work diligently to help you reduce the penalties and potential consequences that you face.