Children’s Code and Juvenile Offenses

Children and juveniles in the justice system

Children and juveniles face a different set of procedures, penalties, and potential resolutions of their cases when arrested and charged with committing a crime. Kids and teenagers are inexperienced and make life-altering decisions and errors in judgment which Colorado courts recognize.

Department of Human Services, Division of Youth Corrections, or Diversion?

The array of penalties a juvenile can face are broader and tend to mirror those of adult offenders in some respects, and differ widely in others. Depending on the specific facts of the case, the Department of Human Services and respective Child Support Agencies can get involved in determining the fitness of the parents to continue to guide and monitor their children.

While youthful offenders face a court system that is far more likely to work with them and rehabilitative their behaviors, extensive criminal histories, aggravated cases, demonstrating no regard for their actions, and exhibiting “adult-like” behavior and menacing demeanor can result in sentences to the Division of Youth Corrections.

For those juveniles who do not have extensive criminal histories, whose families are present as a support structure, and who exhibit exculpatory and mitigation factors, the penalty can be a much less severe form of probation known as “Diversion”. A Diversion counselor can set the juvenile up with public service requirements, counseling requirements, homework and writing requirements, therapy requirements, and other screening requirements as is necessary and determined by the counselor.

Why and When to Hire an Attorney?

Like most crimes, and especially in regard to juvenile offenders, the time to start thinking about an attorney happens immediately following an encounter with a law enforcement officer. In these delicate contexts, and with the extreme coercive pressure an adult law enforcement officer can have on a juvenile, certain admissions and coerced statements can be elicited from a minor who does not understand the rights provided under the Constitution.

A conviction for a juvenile can be extremely harsh as it may preclude them from pursuing sports and academic scholarships for colleges, the loss of driving privileges, and limitations on future career advancement.

Hiring an attorney who understands the crossing arenas of the Criminal Code as it pairs with the Children’s Code may mean the difference between dismissal or a light form of probation versus a jury trial and potential lifetime of consequences to follow. Not all criminal defense attorney’s understand the Children’s Code, Diversion, or how the juvenile court system handles these type of cases.


The best attorney is the attorney who spends time talking to you about your case, knows what is going on, and is willing to devote as much time as is needed to handle your case correctly. We bring big firm experience, significant criminal law experience, and jury trial readiness to you. Schedule a free consultation now by contacting us at (720) 213-3774 or by email at