Indiana Juvenile Delinquency Lawyer

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Indianapolis Juvenile Defense Lawyer

Each year anywhere from 25,000 to 35,000 juveniles will be arrested for committing criminal offenses in the state of Indiana. These offenses vary from burglary, robbery, theft, drug possession, underage drinking, OWI, weapons offenses, sex crimes, curfew violations, and more. Juveniles must adhere to state criminal laws, but because they are minors, they cannot be prosecuted through the same system as adult offenders. Indiana, therefore, set up a special system for juveniles in family court and provided special rules and regulations that juveniles must follow. If your child has been accused of violating the law in Indiana, it is important to hire the right Indianapolis juvenile defense attorney. The right lawyer has a keen understanding of both Indiana criminal law and family law and knows how important the outcome of your child’s case is for your family.

At Eskew Law, we focus on providing clients and their families with a unique experience. Rather than focusing only on finishing your case as quickly as possible, we devote time, energy, and attention to ensuring that the representation we provide matches your expectations and needs. At a consultation with our experienced Indianapolis criminal defense lawyers, we will discuss how to tackle juvenile delinquency allegations, explain the law, and formulate a plan of action. To schedule a consultation, call Eskew Law now at (317) 974-0177.

Outstanding service! I couldn't be happier with the results.

– Ralph

What Is Juvenile Delinquency?

Juvenile delinquency is a term used to describe when a minor commits a criminal offense or another violation of the law associated with minors, such as a curfew violation. The Indiana Code sets forth a slew of crimes and their penalties, all of which a knowledgeable Indianapolis juvenile defense attorney at Eskew Law can explain further, if necessary. While juveniles must abide by these laws just like adults, they cannot be prosecuted or punished like an adult. Instead, they go through the juvenile delinquency process, which is a more private process that focuses more on rehabilitation and providing services to troubled youth.

A juvenile is a minor under the age of eighteen. A delinquent child is a juvenile who commits an act defined as a crime in the Indiana Code and needs treatment or assistance that either he/she is not receiving or refuses to accept without the intervention of a judge. While the law usually places discretion in the hands of parents with how to raise their children, it may intervene when a minor commits a criminal offense in hopes of rehabilitating the juvenile.

Aside from criminal acts, other delinquent acts include:

  • Violating curfew
  • Leaving the house without permission
  • Skipping school or excessive tardiness without permission
  • Routinely disobeying parents
  • Using fireworks that results in property damage

If your child is accused of violating the law, the state may intervene and initiate a juvenile case. The judge may then impose orders, such as coordinating a counselor to work with your child, monitoring school attendance, and penalizing your child if any orders are violated.

Unfortunately, the court does have authority to detain your child. However, your child is afforded certain rights and protections under the law. If your child is in custody, there will be a detention hearing, and your Indianapolis juvenile defense lawyer will advocate for your child’s release. A good lawyer will speak with you and the other parent, your child’s teachers, community leaders, employers, sports coaches, counselors, and more to formulate a recommendation plan to the judge that will ensure your child’s safety and compliance with court orders.


There are times the State may attempt to try a juvenile as though they were an adult. The scenarios where that are possible are:

  • If the child is at least 14 years and is charged with what would be a felony if committed by an adult. The crime must be extremely heinous or part of an ongoing pattern of criminal behavior. The state must also prove that the child is beyond the juvenile rehabilitation within the juvenile courts and that it is in the best interest to society to waive the child to adult court
  • If the child is over 16, the crime committed would be a felony if committed by an adult and it is in the best interest of society to try the juvenile as an adult
  • Murder or rape if the child is over 10 years old
  • If the child is over 16 and the offense would be a level 1, 2, 3, or 4 Felony that is not drug related and it is in the best interest of society to try the child as an adult
  • If the child has a prior adult felony or non-traffic misdemeanor

Contact an Indianapolis Juvenile Defense Attorney for a Case Evaluation

If your child has been charged with juvenile delinquency, you may be confused and worried about what will happen next. The skilled Indianapolis criminal defense lawyers at Eskew Law can explain what to expect, how the process works, and how we can help your child. We take this privilege and responsibility seriously for all of our clients throughout Indianapolis and Central Indiana. To schedule an initial consultation, call Eskew Law at (317) 974-0177.

Next Steps

1. Consultation Meet with the attorney to discuss your legal issue. This initial meeting helps you understand their expertise and decide if they're the right fit.
2. Agreement Review and sign a retainer agreement. This contract outlines the services, fees, and other essential terms.
3. Documents Gather and provide all relevant documents related to your case. This step helps your attorney build your case efficiently.
4. Communication Set expectations for how and when you'll communicate with your attorney. Clear communication ensures that you stay informed throughout the process.

Related Posts

Indiana Juvenile Law: What You Need to Know About Indiana Code 31

Published in Criminal Law by Chris Eskew on May 20, 2021.

Indiana lawmakers face a balancing act when it comes to juvenile offenses. On one hand, everyone recognizes that children are different from adults. On the other hand, there is a ...

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Please note we are not focusing on these types of cases right now. Every parent has the right to raise their child in a way that they see fit. The United States Constitution gr...

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