Boulder parents often don't know how to proceed when a child has been charged with a crime. Colorado's juvenile court system operates differently than the adult legal process. However, allegations of criminal activity are serious nonetheless. Consequences of adjudication -- the juvenile equivalent of a conviction -- have the potential to be long-term.
Two Colorado Springs teens were arrested recently after the 16-year-olds were confronted by police. The defendants were among three juveniles accused of causing property damage and threatening a neighbor. Police records say that officers responded to a home where the owner reported that he was having trouble with vandals.
The property owner decided to take pictures of the juveniles whom he suspected threw rocks through the home's windows. The juveniles, walking along the street, allegedly noticed the photos being taken and entered the homeowner's property. The man stated that one juvenile threatened him with a skateboard.
Responding officers used information provided by witnesses and the homeowner to locate the juveniles outside another home. Officers said that the juveniles were "verbally noncompliant" and that one teen allegedly lashed out. A 16-year-old male reportedly struck and pushed an officer before running into a house.
The juvenile allegedly called out for help as two officers pursued him. The boy's father, awakened by his son's cries, allegedly hit one of the officers and was Tasered, along with his son, by the second officer. Another juvenile was arrested for attempting to block a door to prevent the officers from removing the father and son from the house.
No charges were filed against the father, but the man's son was booked into a detention facility. The teen was charged with assaulting a police officer, trespassing and felony menacing. The second teen was issued a summons for obstructing an officer.
In some cases, juveniles accused of being violent offenders are tried as adults. Others are tried as juveniles. Attorneys can work to help keep a case in the juvenile justice system,
Source: 7 News Denver, "2 teens arrested after confrontation with Colorado Springs Police" Wayne Harrison, Apr. 19, 2014