Children make mistakes, but some mistakes can lead to challenges. Research has shown that children lack maturity in avoiding risky behavior. However, some decisions leading to juvenile offenses can affect a child for the rest of his or her life. Recently, police say that two sisters have made choices that may lead to significant penalties.
Police say that two sisters from Milwaukee have allegedly made a pact with an older man to shoplift from different stores for items to later resell. According to police, the sisters, aged 12 and 14, have been arrested for previous theft offenses. Police say that after a recent theft attempt, the sisters tried to hide in a vehicle. The owner of the vehicle, a man who police believe has recruited the girls to steal for him, allegedly ordered the girls to get out of his car before driving off. The sisters now have been referred to the Milwaukee Juvenile Justice Center and face possible charges.
According to Wisconsin law, a juvenile under the adult age is 17 years or less. This definition is important for determining whether a person is under the jurisdiction of the juvenile or adult court system. In the juvenile court system, the juvenile is considered detained, unlike an arrest of an adult in the adult court system. If a juvenile has been found to commit an offense, the record is a sealed document; this differs from the records of the adult court system, which are public records. If the juvenile has satisfied all conditions and requirements set forth by the juvenile court, typically including good behavior, the juvenile record may be expunged once the individual turns 18 years of age.
However, one lapse of judgment could have consequences that may change the child's life forever. Parents and the accused children should be aware of their rights and create a meaningful defense plan, which may reduce possible penalties.
Source: Wauwatosa Patch, "Police Reports: Young Sisters Make 'Game' of Getting Arrested," Jim Price, Nov. 18, 2012