High school and college students face high risks of collateral consequences when they are arrested and accused of criminal acts. In this situation, your education and your future are at stake, which makes building a strong defense essential. By contacting a Loxahatchee student defense Lawyer, you may be able to minimize the impact of these circumstances on your life and avoid or minimize the resulting penalties.
Various options may exist for resolving criminal charges, as well as the disciplinary actions that schools are likely to initiate in response to those charges. One of our dedicated Attorneys at Leifert & Leifert may be able to explain all options that are available to you. With this knowledge, you may be able to choose the course of action or plan that is most applicable to your case.
Criminal Court and Student Disciplinary Proceedings
When adults become subject to arrest and criminal charges, their biggest worry is likely the sentence that they will receive in Court. For young adult and minor students, however, they can face not only criminal court penalties but also discipline through the schools or colleges in which they are enrolled. The potential penalties from both proceedings can be severe and ultimately have devastating effects on their future.
Depending on the nature of the criminal charge, the court may require students to pay fines, serve terms of probation, complete community service, and serve time in jail. On the other hand, school disciplinary proceedings can result in suspension, probationary periods, exclusion from specific activities, and even expulsion. In any case, criminal records and sanctions on school records both can be disastrous for students.
Typical Student Arrests and Charges in Loxahatchee
Many students, whether in high school or college, go through a period of rebellion or experimentation that can land them in trouble with the law. Drinking alcohol and using drugs often result in criminal charges, but they also can lead to behaviors that cause other criminal charges. For instance, drinking too much can directly result in arrests for assault and battery, resisting arrest, and breach of the peace.
Alcohol and drug-related crimes are among the most common offenses that students face, including:
- Underage possession and consumption of alcohol
- Usage or possession of fake IDs
- Drug possession and possession with intent to distribute
- Stalking or Harassment
- Cyber Bullying
- Sexual Misconduct
The penalties for these offenses range widely, although pretrial programs may be available, particularly for minor crimes and individuals with no previous criminal record. Nonetheless, not all students qualify for these programs, so the potential for severe consequences as a result of a criminal conviction is substantial. A Loxahatchee Attorney can be crucial in defending students against these and other criminal charges.
School Conduct Code Violations
All schools have a written code of behavior or standards that students must follow. When they violate these rules, they can face disciplinary measures, independent of any punishment that they might receive through the criminal justice system. Furthermore, the outcome of the criminal arrest does not impact student disciplinary proceedings, as a mere arrest may be enough to trigger a conduct code violation.
Although criminal court proceedings require constitutional protections for those accused of crimes, most student disciplinary proceedings provide no such protections for students. While these policies vary from one school to another, most require a much lesser standard of proof than in a criminal case. Prosecutors must prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, but in many student conduct code hearings, administrators may find a violation if it is more likely than not that the student committed the acts in question.
As a result, even if students can avoid a criminal conviction or have the charges dismissed, they still can face significant sanctions through their schools. Consulting a Loxahatchee student defense Lawyer may be the only mean of effectively fighting back against these potential penalties.
Contact a Loxahatchee Student Defense Attorney Today
An arrest, criminal charges, or a conviction can cause students to lose the scholarships and financial aid that allow them to attend school. Suspensions and expulsions may make continuing toward degrees impractical or even impossible. As a Loxahatchee student defense Lawyer at Leifert & Leifert can advise, these records also may have damaging effects on internships, jobs, and admissions to graduate and professional schools.
Avoiding or minimizing the risk of punishment in court and the classroom can be critical to your future. By utilizing the services of legal counsel, you may be in a stronger position to defend yourself against these accusations.