Juvenile Arrest in Santa Clarita?
                                Call Matthew Direct at 661-327-7833

Has a loved one been arrested in Santa Clarita and facing a criminal charge in juvenile
Court in Sylmar California?  Matt can help, he is a TOP RATED LAWYER  with well over
25 years experience defending good people accused of doing bad things.  Matt has prior
experience in the District Attorney's Office Juvenile Division so he knows system inside and
What many people do not realize is that the juvenile justice system is completely
different than the adult system.  Juvenile Court requires special knowledge and skills which
is why you need Top Rated Santa Clarita Juvenile Attorney Matthew Ruff on your side.

Matthew serves the Juvenile Court in Sylmar which handles all cases out of Santa Clarita,

Valencia, Canyon Country, Stevenson Ranch, Westridge, Saugus and Newhall.  We also
defend case involving juveniles and minors in Los Angeles against DMV suspensions and
revocations of their precious California Driver's License and driving privileges.

Matthew has extensive experience in defending juveniles and minors in all criminal matters.  
Matt got his start while working inside the Juvenile Division of one of the largest District
Attorneys Offices in California so he knows the system from both the inside and outside.

Matthew also has tremendous experience in alcohol and drug related offense involving
minors and juveniles in the Santa Clarita Valley.  Matt understands how important it is to
keep a clean criminal and DMV record so he fights these charges aggressively.  All Zero
Tolerance cases involving alcoholic beverages, Marijuana and Prescription Drugs.

Overview of the Juvenile Court System:
Juvenile Court is a separate court system for those under the age of 18.  All states have
such courts to  deal with youthful offenders.  The Juvenile court in Los Angeles County
serves three distinctly different groups of children.  

First, there are children who have committed an act that if committed by an adult would be
considered criminal.  These children are often called delinquents or 602 kids.  This comes
from section 602 of the Welfare and Institution Code which deals with these offenses.  
Common criminal offenses include drug possession, weapon possession, street racing,
alcohol and DUI offenses, theft and shoplifting, assault and battery, vandalism, among many
others.  A Juvenile Criminal Defense Attorney is crucial to a positive outcome on these

Second, there are children who have committed status offenses.  Status offenses
are activities that are only wrong if committed by minors.  Examples of these offenses are
truancy, violating curfew, running away from home, possession of cigarettes, etc.  Such
offenses would not be considered criminal if committed by an adult.  Children who have
violated this section are often referred to as children in need of supervision. Lastly,  there
are kids who have been abused, neglected or abandoned, these children are referred to the
dependency Court.

With regard to children charged with delinquency offenses, under 707 of the Welfare
and Institutions Code the case can be transferred out of the juvenile justice system and into
the adult system under certain circumstances.  Generally, the decision to transfer the case
out to adult Court is based on the following criteria:

  • The minor's degree of criminal sophistication.
  • Whether the minor can reasonably be rehabilitated
  • The child's previous delinquent history and criminal record
  • The success of previous attempts by the juvenile court to rehabilitate the minor
  • The circumstances and gravity of the offense

Usually, a child will only be transferred to adult court if his or her alleged offense
was extremely serious, such as murder, arson, armed robbery, sexual assault, selling drugs
to minors, battery causing great bodily injury, carjacking and other violent felonies.

Children  who remain in the juvenile court system may be kept until they are 21 years of age
or until 25 if the minor was over 16 at the time of the offense or arrest.

What will happen if my child is arrested for breaking the Law?

Children who are arrested by the police are entitled to the same Miranda warnings as
adults.  Once a child has asked for an attorney or their parent, the police must cease
questioning.  Juveniles also have Fourth Amendment Protections against unlawful searches
by the Police.  Law enforcement have more discretion in whether to release a child to a
parent or keep  them in custody.  If a minor is held in custody they must be housed
separately from adults.  Children who have been detained must be released within 48 hours
(excluding non-court days) unless a criminal complaint (called a petition) is filed by the
District Attorney in Santa Clarita or Valencia.

Unlike adults, children have no right to bail unless the case is transferred to the adult
system.  The minors also have no right to a jury trial, their case will be heard by a local
Santa Clarita Judge who often has a background in criminal prosecution.

Trials are called adjudication proceedings.  A Lawyer  is essential to ensure the minor
receives a fair trial and to present any defenses that may exonerate the child.  If found
guilty a judge can grant probation or the child may be sent to juvenile camp or the California
Youth Authority which is similar to adult prison.  A Juvenile Lawyer familiar with the system
can help level the playing field and give your son or daughter a fighting chance.

If your child has been detained, arrested or is facing criminal charges it is important to
consult with an attorney experienced with the system,
contact us for a free consultation

California has some of the toughest laws pertaining to juvenile offenders and you need a
skilled advocate on your child's side at all times.  Unfortunately too many parents don't take
these cases seriously and thick the police are there to help their child.  Call Top Valencia
Juvenile defense Attorney Matthew Ruff BEFORE you allow your loved one to talk to the
police in order to fully protect their Constitutional Rights and not prejudice the case.

Matthew can be reached Direct at 661-327-7833
Santa Clarita Juvenile Attorney