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Oak Brook, IL 60523
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Myers Law LLC

Criminal Defense

IL juvenile lawyerIn 1899, Illinois was the first state to do something that no other state had done before -- create a juvenile justice system. Prior to then, juveniles were tried in adult court and were treated as adults were. Illinois lawmakers realized that juveniles had different needs and abilities than adults did and that a separate court and justice system was necessary. The juvenile justice system emphasizes the importance of rehabilitating and protecting youth after they commit a crime -- not punishing them. The juvenile justice system also awards certain rights to both children and their parents or guardians when they are in trouble with the law. Many people may not know about these rights, but it is important that you exercise those rights if your child has gotten into trouble.

Rights of Juvenile Offenders

Every person is guaranteed certain rights by the United States Constitution, but juveniles have special, additional rights because they are a part of the juvenile justice system. Rights that juveniles have include:

  • Right to Remain Silent: Like all other American citizens, children who are arrested and interrogated by police have the right to remain silent. They must be notified of this right before any interrogation begins. This is known as the right against self-incrimination.
  • Right to Legal Representation: Another one of the rights guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution, children have a right to be represented by a lawyer during the criminal process. If you do not have the means to hire a private lawyer, a public defender who is knowledgeable about juvenile justice will be appointed to your child.
  • Right to Talk to a Parent or Guardian: Before your child submits to any questioning, they should inform the officer that they would like you to be present during questioning. Police must immediately try to contact you.
  • Right to Know the Charges Against Them: Police are required to tell your child what charges are being held against them and why police believe they committed a crime.

Rights of Parents

Parents also have rights when their child is arrested. These rights include:

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IL defense lawyerMost crime in the United States is committed by adults -- but that does not mean that juvenile crime is uncommon. According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), there were over 8 million arrests in 2017, but only an estimated 815,173 -- or 9.9 percent -- of those arrests were for people under the age of 18. Of those juvenile arrests, an overwhelming amount (769,985 or 94 percent) of them were teenagers. Law enforcement officers have reported that there is a noticeable trend in the types of crimes that teenagers commit. Here are the top crimes that teenagers have been known to commit:

Theft/Larceny: In 2017, there were 93,178 arrests to juveniles for suspicion of committed theft or larceny. In Illinois, theft is committed when a person knowingly takes control over property owned by someone else, whether that is by deception or threat of harm. It also occurs when a person obtains control over property and knows that the property is stolen. Shoplifting occurs when a person takes property from a retail establishment without paying for it. Theft/larceny charges can be charged as a misdemeanor or felony, depending on the value of the stolen goods.

Vandalism: There were 28,842 juvenile arrests for vandalism in 2017. According to Illinois code, vandalism is the act of damaging, destructing, defacing or otherwise destroying property of another person. The type of vandalism that teenagers commit is typically tagging and graffiti, drawing on walls or defacing cars.

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b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_404002519.jpgFar too often, a fun and relaxing evening spent with family and friends can end up being a night spent behind bars, due to drinking and driving. Being charged with driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs is serious. You may lose potential employment opportunities, the ability to drive, and even your vehicle, in more serious cases. In the state of Illinois, anyone who is accused of a DUI must go through a drug or alcohol evaluation before sentencing for the offense.

Why Does the Offender Have to Be Evaluated?

The evaluation was made to determine the offender’s alcohol and drug use and the risk to public safety. The offender’s driving record, chemical test results, test score and category, and an interview with an evaluator will be reviewed during this process. 

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b2ap3_thumbnail_shutterstock_633190058.jpgSmall businesses want to know for sure that the employees they hire will be trustworthy and will work hard to ensure stability for the company. Even though most employees are trustworthy and are worth keeping in the business, there are, unfortunately, far too many situations in the workplace where employee theft occurs. Theft is a serious crime that may come with unwanted consequences, and theft in the workplace could be grounds for immediate termination of employment.

Why are Small Businesses Not Reporting Employee Theft?

Small businesses do not always get law enforcement involved when an employee steals from the company. As many as 64 percent of all small businesses have experienced some type of employee theft—with only 16 percent of all incidents being reported to law enforcement.

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DuPage Bar Foundation President, Clarissa R.E. Myers of Myers Law LLC, awarded scholarships to deserving students at the Installation Dinner for the DuPage County Bar Association at the Medinah County Club on June 10, 2016.  She also introduced the much beloved Hon. Ted Duncan, an important contributor to the DuPage Bar Foundation.  

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