When a young person is accused of a crime, no matter how trivial or minor the incident in question may be, the consequences of that charge can stick with them for the rest of their lives. In some cases, it is possible for the juvenile to expunge this charge from their criminal history — but in many cases, the charge sticks, making it very difficult for the young individual to attain work without complications.
That may sound extreme; but when anyone files a job application, there is that question that reads something like this: “Have you ever been arrested or charged with a crime?” It’s a yes or no question, but a telling one, at least to potential employers.
They will inevitably want to know more about the person if they respond to that question with a “yes.” Say a 30-year-old is applying for jobs, but at age 16 he was involved in a shouting match with a teacher. This happens when young people, who are more likely to be immature by their very nature, get frustrated during a radical period in their life. The person is arrested on misdemeanor charges, and now, 14 years later, he has to answer questions about a minor (relatively speaking) incident.
It is a definite problem with juvenile crimes right now. Schools are increasing their police presence, and a shift in culture has prompted many young students to be arrested for things that, many years ago, would have ended with an in-school punishment. Maybe the student’s parents would be called in; maybe the principal would be involved. But now, it can end with handcuffs and a trip to the police station.
Source: Orlando Sentinel, “Thousands of student arrests alarm Florida justice leaders,” Leslie Postal and Lauren Roth, Feb. 10, 2013
- If you would like to learn more about the complicated nature of juvenile crimes, please visit our Rock Hill criminal defense page.