The Juvenile court has original jurisdiction over a person under the age of 18 and may retain jurisdiction over the minor until the age of 21. In certain situations, a minor may be charged as an adult, however the minor is entitled to a fitness hearing attempting to keep the case in juvenile court as oppose to adult criminal court. The primary purpose of juvenile delinquency court is articulated under Welfare Institutions Code section 202: 1. protection and safety of the public; 2. preserve and strengthen the minor's family ties whenever possible; and 3. punishment that is consistent with rehabilitative objectives through, care, treatment, and guidance.
Inglewood Juvenile Courthouse is located at 110 East Regent Street, Inglewood, CA 90301. There are three courtrooms: Department 240, Department 241, and Department 242. Inglewood Juvenile Court covers juvenile arrests made in the Southbay, including the following cities: Westchester, Hawthorne, Lawndale, Inglewood, Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, Redondo Beach, Torrance, Culver City, and El Segundo.
There are many differences between adult court and juvenile court. In juvenile court there is no bail, there is no right to a jury trial, no guilt or innocence, and the probation department plays an intergral part of the system before and during the criminal proceedings.
When an arrest has been made by a police officer, the arresting officer has a few options. The police officer may arrest a minor without a warrant for a misdemeanor of a felony if the officer has probable cause to believe that the minor committed an offense. The crime does not have to occur in the officer's presence. An officer may also detain the minor for reasonable belief that the minor is truant. An officer may also arrest a minor with a warrant, however that is not the usual course of practice. The officer will most likely detain the minor on truancy grounds or effectuate an arrest of the minor while he or she is in school. The officer may cite and release the minor with a Notice to Appear in Inglewood court or detain the minor. If a police officer decides that the minor should be detained, the officer must take the minor to probation as soon as possible but no later than 24 hours. The officer must also give the probation officer to who the minor is delivered a written statement of probable cause for the detention.
When the minor is booked in custody, the probation department will investigate the totality of the circumstances and decide to either release the minor to the parents or detain the minor. If the minor is detained, a detention hearing must be conducted in 48 hours in Inglewood Court, excluding weekends and court holidays. If a detention hearing is not conducted, the minor must be release.
When the minor and the parents are served with a Notice to Appear in Inglewood Courthouse, the minors first court appearance will be his or her arraignment. The minor does not plea guilty or not guilty but admits or denies the allegation. Usually, the case will be set for a pre-plea report. It is at this stage that the minor and his family want to build a good report with the probation department by showing good conduct, reform, and rehabilitation. The minor should not talk about the facts of the case, but can show good conduct to the probation by the following: staying away from victim, class attendance, improving grades, rehabilitation programs, community service, and community involvement. There are many ways to dispose a case in Inglewood courthouse, including but not limited to, adjudication hearing, informal diversion, DEJ, probation, and sealing and destruction of court record.
If you or your child have been detained or have been issued a citation with a Notice to Appear in Inglewood Courthouse, call attorney Arthur Khachatourians for a defense consultation: