Juvenile Cases

In many juvenile matters, there are diversion-minded programs that may result in the dismissal of charges.  One program is known as “informal supervision”.   If the minor elects to do participate, he/she must serve six-months of informal probation while performing community service, attending and receiving acceptable grades in school, providing restitution, if any to the victim, as well as completing any other terms the judge may require.  At the conclusion of the six-month term, and assuming the minor has successfully completed the terms of probation, the case will be dismissed.

In more serious cases, including certain felonies, there is another program similar to informal supervision above.  Known as “deferred entry of judgment” (DEJ), this program requires the minor to serve a full year of probation and upon the successful conclusion of probation, the case will also be dismissed.  This diversion program however, requires that the minor admit the charges in the petition (criminal complaint).  Should the minor fail in DEJ, the court can impose sentence immediately.

In the City of Santa Clarita, there are two additional diversion programs, “Teen Court” and “Community Court”.  Both are also designed to give first-time youthful offenders an opportunity to earn a dismissal of their criminal case.