A teenager from a Chicago Suburban High School has been arrested following his alleged posting of “on-line” threats on social media indicating that he would shoot up his High School. He was found to be in possession of a number of firearms and has been ordered to be held in detention during the pendency of the charges against him in court. Because he is a juvenile, his name has been withheld from the public. Also because he is a juvenile, any further proceedings will be kept from public view.
Unlike adult defendants in the regular criminal courts that are charged as “criminals” by the People of the State of Illinois, juveniles are afforded extra protections adults do not have. The basic premise of Illinois’ juvenile justice system is to further the rehabilitation of the minor delinquent offender, all the while balancing the needs of the juvenile against the need to punish the offender, and to protect society from further harm. Therefore, youthful offenders are charged via a Petition For Adjudication of Wardship, intended to declare the Minor Respondent a delinquent minor, and place him under the authority of the State.
Unlike criminal charges such as felonies, that carry a possible prison term in excess of one year (for example, perhaps receiving a 10 year prison term for armed robbery), a juvenile offender is afforded every opportunity for rehabilitation, and only when it appears that the Probation Department cannot provide adequate services to rehabilitate the minor, and the minor is not amenable to any efforts to rehabilitate, may a court send a minor to the Juvenile Department of Corrections (such as you may have seen in the Sean Penn movie “Bad Boys”). Even then, there is no fixed term of incarceration: a juvenile may be held until he reaches the age of 21, or he may be released at the discretion of the JDOC at any time if the minor appears to have the ability to comply with the terms of early release.
If you are facing possible criminal charges, whether you are an adult, or a juvenile, or you are a parent of a kid facing trouble, you need the Chicago criminal defense attorneys at Mitchell S. Sexner & Associates LLC. to aggressively defend you against the weight and might of the State. Call us at (312) 644-0444 today for a completely confidential, no-cost no-obligation consultation.