Juvenile Delinquency Lawyers in Howard County, MD
Protect Your Child’s Future Through Solid Legal Representation in Columbia, MD
Juvenile justice is the area of criminal law applicable to persons not old enough to be held responsible for criminal acts. Juveniles, or minors, are any individuals not yet 18 years of age.
When a minor child is accused of a criminal act, the process is initiated by the Maryland Department of Juvenile Services and a hearing is held in their offices to determine whether the allegation can be handled on an informal level or whether the case needs to be referred to the criminal courts for prosecution.
At Shapiro Zwanetz & Lake, our Howard County juvenile delinquency attorneys have specific experience in handling all criminal matters through the Department of Juvenile Services, which will, in turn, help avoid formal prosecution.
If it is not possible to prevent a juvenile matter from reaching Court, our attorneys stand ready to zealously defend our juvenile clients in any judicial proceeding.
Above all, however, we act as dedicated advocates for our juvenile clients’ rights, and work relentlessly to ensure justice in every case we handle.
Drug Abuse Hits Hard in Rural Areas
Drug and alcohol abuse among youth in rural areas is equal to or more prevalent than metropolitan areas, including Howard County’s rural population.
Youth substance abuse and the criminal charges for such crimes and other crimes associated with illegal drug and alcohol use by minors in Howard County needs rigorous defense from a skillful Howard County Attorney who knows the fine facets of law associated, not only with substance abuse, but with the juvenile aspects of these ominous criminal charges that can so negatively affect a life before it ultimately has the chance to begin.
Whether or not you live in one of the rural areas of higher incidence of juvenile substance abuse, if your minor son or daughter has been charged with a crime involving possession or distribution of narcotics, or has been involved in a motor vehicle accident while driving under the influence, it isn’t always enough to retain counsel with background in substance abuse cases or one with expertise in DUI law in Howard County.
Exploring Alternatives to Incarceration for Juvenile Offenders
At Shapiro Zwanetz & Lake, we understand that every case is unique and that juvenile offenders deserve a chance at rehabilitation and a brighter future. That's why we are dedicated to exploring alternatives to incarceration for our clients in Columbia, MD and the surrounding areas.
Instead of resorting to traditional punitive measures, such as juvenile detention centers, we advocate for alternative programs that focus on rehabilitation, education, and community involvement. These alternatives not only help prevent future criminal behavior but also provide young offenders with the tools they need to turn their lives around.
Some of the alternatives to incarceration that we may explore for your child's case include:
- Diversion programs: These programs aim to divert juvenile offenders away from the criminal justice system by providing counseling, education, and community service opportunities.
- Restorative justice: This approach focuses on repairing the harm caused by the offense through mediation, dialogue, and community involvement. It encourages accountability, empathy, and understanding.
- Probation: Instead of being sent to a detention center, your child may be placed on probation, which involves regular check-ins with a probation officer, adherence to specific conditions, and participation in rehabilitative programs.
- Community-based programs: These programs provide support, mentoring, and educational opportunities to help juvenile offenders reintegrate into their communities and develop positive life skills.
By exploring these alternatives, we aim to ensure that your child receives the best possible outcome and the opportunity for a successful future. Contact our experienced juvenile crimes defense team today to discuss your child's case and how we can help.
Decades of Quality Advocacy
You also want to be sure that the Howard County Attorney you choose to represent your child has the knowledge of juvenile law that can make a big difference in the way the defense is presented which can result in a much more favorable impact on the way the case will be judged. The juvenile delinquency attorneys at Shapiro Zwanetz & Lake have that niche knowledge.
When a minor faces criminal charges, the emotional strain and stress reverberate in each member of the entire family throughout what can be a lengthy litigation process. The family needs support in this time of grave emotional upheaval.
An attorney versed in juvenile law will be able to empathize with an involved family’s tensions and apprehension and will be able to guide the family to the best psychological counseling to address these problems, as well as to any applicable substance abuse treatment programs for the defendant that will benefit the child’s case and will also treat family issues.
Serving All of Columbia & the Surrounding Areas
Offices in Columbia, but serving Howard County, Baltimore City, Baltimore County, Anne Arundel County, Carroll County, Prince George’s County, Montgomery County, Frederick County, and Queen Anne’s County. We have successfully handled and will handle cases in counties not listed on a case by case basis.
Call the award-winning attorneys at (410) 927-5137 now and get started on your case.
We approach every case as a team.
Every initial consultation is free and no-obligation.
We are available for you 24/7.
We are a team of former prosecutors and know how the other side thinks.
We have in-house payment plan options on qualifying cases.
We are highly recommended and awarded by various associations.
“From my 8-month experience, Mr. Justin Lake is a great lawyer with ethics and morals. Even more a good man in a time there seems ...”- L.W.
“EXTREMELY helpful!”- L.M.
“I feel like a weight has been lifted from my shoulders!”- L.R.
At Shapiro, Zwanetz & Associates (SZA) we believe in thinking differently from most lawyers and law firms. We help our clients understand and accept their legal situation; we work with them to confront and improve that situation, while seeking the best outcome available at law. We recognize that each client is a unique individual, each deserving of the highest client/customer service; and we just happen to get our clients excellent results while we deliver that exceptional service.