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The National Trial Lawyers

The 2 Types Of Juvenile Crime In California

Law Office of Katie Walsh

The state of California recognizes two types of juvenile crime: status offenses and delinquent acts. 

Going over what these two types of juvenile crime mean and can lead to while speaking with a California juvenile defense lawyer at the Law Office of Katie Walsh will allow you to obtain the best possible legal outcome.

What Is A Status Offense?

A status offense is an act that is not usually considered a crime. But, if this act is committed by someone who is considered a minor, then it becomes a crime.

Or, more specifically, it becomes a “status offense,” which serves as a legal violation that can lead to legal consequences.

Some of the most notable and common status offenses are as follows:

  • Drinking alcohol while under the age of 21.
  • Skipping school.
  • Running away from home.

Every single one of the above is considered a status offense.

If a juvenile is found guilty of a status offense, then they can end up in some form of legal trouble. But, this legal trouble is unlikely to be significant, although speaking with a lawyer is always wise.

What Is A Delinquent Act?

A delinquent act is a criminal act that would still be a crime if the one who committed it was not a minor.

Just as an example of the above, if a juvenile beats up another person, then that is considered assault. Assault is a crime regardless of the individual’s age, meaning that it can, and always will, lead to criminal charges.

Even though the above is true, the juvenile justice system prioritizes rehabilitation. Given this fact, a juvenile who is charged with a juvenile act will likely face a less significant sentence than if they committed this crime as an adult.

On the other hand, if a juvenile commits an especially serious crime – murder, for example – then they can, and likely will, be charged as an adult and receive a sentence that an adult would receive.

What Are The Consequences Of Being Charged For A Delinquent Act?

  • Going through a diversionary program.
  • Counseling.
  • A citation.
  • Probation.
  • Community service.

A wide variety of different consequences can be levied on a juvenile who is charged with a delinquent act. Some of the most notable of these consequences are as follows:

None of these consequences are guaranteed. But they are common, meaning that it is always within the realm of possibility that your child if charged with a delinquent act, will receive at least one of these consequences.

To ensure that they do not receive these consequences – or, on the other hand, that they receive lesser consequences that do not actively affect their life to the same degree – it is very important that your child works with a lawyer.

Speak With An Orange County Juvenile Criminal Defense Lawyer Today

If your child is being charged with a delinquent act, then they need a lawyer. Speak with an Orange County juvenile criminal defense lawyer at the Law Office of Katie Walsh today to ensure that your child obtains the defense that they need.

Client Reviews

I hired attorney Katie Walsh to help my son when he was found with a large amount of drugs on school campus. She got us through the Expulsion Hearing, and miraculously he can go back to school at the winter semester...

AR- parent of minor client

I hired Katie Walsh to have my felony convictions expunged. She was able to expunge my record within 6 weeks of me giving her all the information. Even though technically I had a probation violation, and therefore the...

AR, criminal client

My 16 year old son was charged with possession of Marijuana, HS 11357(b). I was very concerned about what would happen to him and how this would affect his future. I contacted Ms. Walsh and she assured me that everything...

CT, parent of juvenile client

My child was charged with Felony Penal Code 597(a)- Animal Cruelty. After hiring Katie Walsh, she got the charges reduced to a misdemeanor, counseling, and 40 hours of chores at home. We come back in 6 months and the...

DH - Parent of Juvenile client

I hired Katie Walsh to represent my son on sexual abuse allegations- P.C. 288(a) and P.C. 288(b)- they were Strike Charges. After negotiating with the D.A., she got all the strike charges dismissed, and got my son...

DR- mother of juvenile client

Katie Walsh was fantastic throughout this entire process! My 13 year old son was charged with two counts of lewd act on a minor, PC 288(a) and was in juvenile hall. After hiring Ms. Walsh, she GOT MY SON OUT OF JAIL and...

EG, parent of juvenile client

My 14 year old son was arrested at school for P.C. 311 (child pornography). My son had innocent and stupid nude pictures of himself and friends on his phone. Ms. Walsh was extremely easy to talk to, and made my son feel...

GK,TK, parents of juvenile client

Ms. Walsh was a life saver when I didn't know what was going on, or how to handle the situation. My young daughter was attacked at her middle school and was seriously injured. At a time when both the school and the...

HA, mother of 13 year old Victim Rights client

I hired Katie Walsh to seal my juvenile record of PC 288(a) (lewd act on a minor), after my request had been denied by a Judge and by the Probation Department. After speaking with Probation, the DA and the Judge at a...

JW, former juvenile client

I was charged with a Felony Conspiracy charge- PC 182. After hiring Ms. Walsh she got my charged reduced to a misdemeanor right away, and now I just have to do community service and in 6 months my entire case will be...

KP, juvenile client

Ms. Walsh was like a breath of fresh air throughout this entire process. I was uncertain about the outcome, but she told me everything would be ok- and it was. She had my juvenile record sealed within 3 months of...

LR, former juvenile client

Ms. Walsh got the judge to terminate my son's probation and seal his 2 juvenile cases (Penal Code 288(a) and Penal Code 242) even though he had violated my probation by picking up a new case. By getting his record sealed...

MB- mother of juvenile client

At a very difficult time in my life I contacted attorney Katie Walsh. I am a teacher and was being harassed/stalked by a parent at my school. I wanted a Restraining Order against this person. Ms. Walsh listened to me...

MB, restraining order client

My son was charged with Lewd Conduct, P.C. 647 out of Downey, CA. After hiring Ms. Walsh, she spoke with the District Attorney, Probation, and the Judge. Even though the judge was not pleased with the offer, she was able...

MG, parent of minor

It is with sincere gratitude that I send this recommendation As a parent of a child that was arrested on a Felony Domestic Abuse charge and over 2000 miles away I had to rely on friend of a friends word that you would...

MPF, mother of criminal client

I really liked having Ms. Walsh as my attorney. She visited me in Juvenile Hall. I was charged with four counts of Robbery (Penal Code 211). This was my 8th juvenile petition. Ms. Walsh got 2 of the robbery charges...

MU, juvenile client

I was arrested for a felony Domestic charge, PC 273.5(a). After I hired Katie Walsh, my entire case was dismissed. I never had to appear in court. I felt very comfortable with Ms. Walsh- she was easy to speak with...

NF, criminal client

Katie was instrumental in helping me with a criminal matter as an advocate for me and my children when I was a named victim in a DV case. She patiently and expediently addressed all of my questions and was an invaluable...


My daughter was pulled over arrested for having a Fake ID. After hiring Ms. Walsh my daughter did not have to plead guilty- which would have affected her license status. She did community service, completed a legal...


My 14 year old daughter was involved in an assault and battery- PC 240/242, in Irvine. After hiring Katie Walsh the case was not referred to Court. My daughter was able to complete a class and the case will be dismissed...

SG, mother a juvenile client

My son was charged with possession of Child Pornography P.C. 311.11(a) - a charge I did not realize a child could be guilty of! As parents were beside ourselves when we found this out, and contacted Katie Walsh. She...

SH- mother of juvenile client

From San Diego I contacted Ms. Walsh about sealing my juvenile record in Orange County regarding a Petty Theft charge. She was always very responsive to any of my questions, and consistently kept me updated. Even though...

XL, juvenile client

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