One of the worst things that can happen to a parent is to get that phone call saying their teenager has been arrested. A child under arrest can be detained in a juvenile detention facility for up to three weeks before going to court. You are your child’s biggest defense in such situations. Here are some things you should do if your child has been arrested.
- Go Be With Your Child Immediately
You have the right to be with your child during any questioning by the police or social services. Make sure they know you insist on being with your child for all interviews. If your child is in jail, use bail bonds Lancaster County PA to get your child out as quickly as possible. If you live outside of Pennsylvania, find a bail bond service near you.
- Get an Attorney Right Away
The job of police officers is to gather evidence, not work to ensure your child receives justice, so secure a lawyer for your child as soon as possible. Let the police know you won’t let your youth be interviewed without adequate representation.
- Let Everyone Know You Want Your Child Home
When speaking with the police or juvenile officials make it clear that your want your child to come home. Ensure them that your teen will be attending school and won’t be sneaking out of the house at night.
- Warn Your Child To Remain Silent
Warn your teen not to talk to the police or anyone in a juvenile facility without an attorney present. Anything your child says to anyone, including fellow detainees, can be used as evidence later in court.
- Don’t Miss the First Hearing
Those who work for social services or who work at a juvenile facility might tell you the first hearing is no big deal and you shouldn’t attend. Don’t listen to them. Make it a point to attend every hearing and make sure your child’s attorney is also present. Those first hearings are the most crucial when the judge will determine whether your child should be held in custody. It’s vital that your child have good representation at those hearings.
Finally, remember that just because your teen has been arrested, it doesn’t mean life is over for your child. Your teen will likely learn from the mistake, and you can get the record expunged later with the help of an attorney.