In Nevada, juvenile arrest rates remain above the national average. In 2008, Nevada ranked second in the nation for the highest number of violent crimes and 21st in the nation for the highest number of property crimes. During 2008, there were 446 violent delinquent acts for every 100,000 juveniles in the state. There were also 1,724 property offenses for every 100,000 juvenile offenders and 618 drug arrests per 100,000 juveniles according to UNLV.
Parents need to be aware of the significant impact an arrest can have on a teenager’s life. Inside Higher Ed reports that approximately 66 percent of colleges conduct criminal justice information from student applicants seeking to continue their education. Convictions for drug arrests while on federal aid and certain other convictions for criminal offenses can also preclude someone from getting some federal student loans. A young person with a criminal record may also be ineligible for certain career and volunteer opportunities. You cannot assume that a juvenile record will always be sealed or will never impact a teen’s future.
An experienced Las Vegas criminal defense lawyer will help when teens have been arrested, bringing legal experience to the table to fight for the juvenile offender. While a good criminal defense lawyer can often keep a young person out of juvenile detention and help him to keep a clean record, there are times when this is not possible and the best option is to negotiate a plea.
Before a teen gets to this stage where there is overwhelming evidence of a criminal act, parents should consider stepping in and trying to divert their son or daughter onto a better path. Boot camp is one approach that parents may consider. The U.S. Department of Justice conducted a thorough study of boot camps for juvenile offenders and found significant percentages of teen attendees completed boot camp successfully and showed “significant progress” in academic achievement. If boot camps are able to make a difference once a teen has already offended, they may be even more effective at preventing a crime from occurring in the first place.
Boot Camp Can Help Prevent Teen Offenses
Boot Camps for Teens provides information on different programs for troubled teenagers within the state of United States. The site has details on camps targeted towards providing services towards rebellious teenagers; teen boarding school options; and other programs intended for troubled youth. Parents in the Nevada area can choose to send their child to an out-of-state boot camp in an effort to remove a teen from destructive influences and improve behavior so a teen does not end up incarcerated.
When researching a boot camp, parents should:
- Determine what types of services the boot camp provides. Does the camp provide academic assistance or drug counseling or anger management? The camp should fit the needs of the teenager who is struggling.
- Determine the duration of the program offered by the boot camp. Can the teen go away for a limited period of time and return to school obligations or is the program an extended program?
- Determine what approach the boot camp takes towards discipline and education. What will the teen actually do at the boot camp?
- Discuss the success rate with the boot camp administration. Have teens been helped?
Within some states, teens may actually be sent to boot camp instead of to a standard juvenile detention facility. In Nevada, once a teen has been convicted, he or she likely will not have that opportunity through the courts. A teenager who is sentenced to confinement in Las Vegas will likely serve time in the Clark County Juvenile Detention Center.
An attorney can provide parents with information on penalties for teen offenders and on the juvenile justice process. Parents should consider choosing a boot camp for a troubled teen before an arrest occurs, and should contact an attorney as soon as possible if a teen has already been arrested for a criminal offense.