teenage boy being punchedThis is the next post in my series on the handling of Peoria, Illinois assault and battery cases which involve juveniles. My last article provided an overview of topics which this series will be addressing. It also stressed the need to contact an attorney if your son or daughter has been charged with a crime. It is important that you speak with counsel due to the fact that an assault and battery charge can have lifelong consequences. In this article I will discuss what constitutes assault and battery, as well as the potential penalties a youth faces. If your family is in need of assistance then contact my office today to speak with a lawyer.

Understanding assault and battery charges as well as potential penalties

In Illinois one can be charged with assault and battery by threatening another with harm or attempting to harm them. This is true whether or not harm actually occurs. While a first-offense for an adult will be charged as a misdemeanor, the system works differently for juveniles. This is due to the fact that our state, like many others, does not consider juvenile offenses to be “criminal” in nature. Instead, our legal system considers such matters “civil” instead of “criminal” and sees such situations as simply determining whether a youth is “delinquent.” For all practical purposes, however, this can be a distinction with no real difference. A juvenile will still possibly be arrested and will still face the possibility of incarceration.

A common question is “how much time can a juvenile get for assault?” The answer to the question will vary from situation to situation. The length of any incarceration, or the requirements of any probation, will depend on the facts of the situation. Furthermore, Judges are given more latitude over sentencing in juvenile matters than they are in adult cases. If the victim of the offense was seriously injured, or if the accused youth has a history of violence, then the Court will be more likely to impose incarceration. If the accusations stem from more of a “typical” altercation between youths, then the Court may be more likely to impose probation. It must be remembered that the outcome of any matter will always depend on the facts of the case.

Retain a Peoria juvenile defense lawyer if your child was charged with assault and battery

If your child has been charged with assault and battery then it is important that you take steps to protect their rights. The first of these steps is to retain an attorney with experience in such matters. Counsel will ensure that all possible defenses are explored. Such defenses can include claims of self-defense, establishing that your child did not actually commit the offense, etc. I am a Peoria juvenile defense lawyer and a former prosecutor. I understand that this is an important time for your family and my office will give your case the attention it deserves. Contact us online or by phone to schedule an appointment. I also serve the counties of Fulton, Knox, LaSalle, Marshall, Mason, McLean, Putnam, Rock Island, Schuyler, Stark, Tazewell, and Woodford.