I was with three friends, and we decided to go into an abandoned house we heard about. Turns out, it's not abandoned but it was already severely destroyed when we arrived. The front door was open and we went in. The neighbor saw and called the cops. They arrested us all for Residential Burglary. I'm 16 years old, the only minor of the group. My friends (ages 19, 19, and 20) are in jail. And i am waiting for Juvenile Hall to contact me. The cops found some gold jewelry from the house in my friends pockets.I had no idea they stole anything, but the cops don't believe me. One of my friends has a Petty Theft in his past, and another has a Federal Offense. Their bail is 25,000 each. What is likely to happen to them, and me? Thanks in advance.
You/they need to contact an attorney as soon as possible. The scenario you describe is extremely serious...PC 459 is a strike case (per 3 strike law thus there are higher penalties). Typically strike cases will have some sort of jail time if not state prison.
Look for an attorney that specializes in juvenile defense for yourself. Have your parents call an attorney right away to discuss your exposure.
To disagree with the prior poster, a 1st degree Residential Burglary is not a strike for juveniles. In order for a juvenile offense to be a strike, it has to fall under the code sections that define which offense qualify under the "3 Strikes Law" -AND- under Welfare and Institutions Code 707(b). A 1st degree burglary IS NOT a 707(b) offense, and thus does not consitute a "strikeable" offense for juveniles.
That being said, it's still a serious offense and the juvenile court can sentence you to time in custody, boot camp, community service, etc.- any of the punishments available to it (with the exception of the California Youth Authority). I would advise you to speak with a competent attorney who regularly practices in the area of juvenile delinquency...
As for your friends who are not juveniles, a residential burglary IS a strikeable offense that carries UP TO six years in prison (that doesn't mean that's what they would receive, just the maximum exposure for the offense).
Respectfully, neither of the above answers are completely correct regarding a residential burglary counting as a strike. Although residential burglary is not a 707(b) offense, it is a serious offense under 1192.7(c)(18). This means that residential burglary does count as a strike prior if the minor has also sustained a previous 707(b) conviction.
True; I assumed based on the question that this was probably a first offense. The summary of the law mentioned above is pasted below (however, these are very technical arguments that most often arise where a juvenile has an extensive history):
,...If the defendant was found a ward of the court for an offense listed as a serious or violent felony under the three strikes law (Pen C §§667.5(c), 1192.7(c)) that was not listed in Welfare and Institutions Code section 707(b), and at the same time the defendant was also found a ward of the court for a crime that was listed in section 707(b), then the non-707(b) offense does count as a strike (and so does the section 707(b) offense). Second, under People v Leng (1999) 71 CA4th 1, if the defendant was found a ward of the court for a section 707(b) offense, and that crime was not also listed as a serious or violent felony, then the offense does not count as a strike. [Excerpt from the 3 Strikes Manual]