If your son or daughter has been arrested, there is no better firm to represent him or her than Austin Hagee Law Firm.
Being arrested while in high school or college can feel like a death sentence to the student and to the parents. A conviction or arrest on your record could permanently stifle your child’s future, both academically and economically.
The last thing your son or daughter can afford is to have their record permanently stained with a conviction. Because the potential consequences are so dire following an arrest, it is imperative you fight the accusation with a premier defense firm.
An arrest does not have to end up on your record as a conviction. We can help you move past this with minimal consequences.
If your son or daughter is arrested while attending school, potential consequences are not limited to just their criminal case, we will also have to deal with an internal School Decision. Typically, a hearing must be conducted within 30 days of the arrest once the School has been notified.
This hearing is often a one-sided attempt to get your son or daughter to confess to the accusation, so they may expel, suspend, or take other disciplinary action against the student.
It is basically impossible to defend yourself as a student in these hearings, as they are designed to intimidate and threaten the student into doing what the school administration desires.
If your kid gets arrested at school, having the right legal representation can mean the difference between obtaining a degree or getting kicked out of school.
To get started, please contact our San Antonio criminal defense attorneys today.
Typical Arrests During Your High School Or College Years:
- Driving While Intoxicated,
- Driving Under the Influence (Reserved for Ages Under 21,)
- Possession of Marijuana,
- Possession of Controlled Substance,
- Criminal Mischief,
- Manufacturing or Delivery of a Controlled Substance,
- Sexual Assault or Rape,
- Contributing Alcohol to a Minor,
- Reckless Driving, and
- Racing on a Highway or Roadway.
Was Your High School Student Arrested?
Being arrested in high school can have profound, far-reaching consequences—especially in Texas, where criminal justice policies are notably strict.
The immediate implications include possible detention, court appearances, and legal fees. When a kid gets arrested at school, they could face penalties ranging from community service to incarceration in a juvenile detention center, depending on the severity of the offense.
The legal consequences are just the tip of the iceberg. The arrest record could be a black mark on the student’s profile, affecting college admissions and scholarship opportunities.
Many universities and colleges ask applicants about their criminal history, and some scholarships have eligibility criteria that exclude individuals with criminal records.
Moreover, the arrest could result in disciplinary action from the school, including suspension or expulsion.
Socially, the arrested person may face stigmatization and a loss of trust from peers, teachers, and even family.
This can lead to emotional distress, impacting mental health and academic performance. Friends may distance themselves, and teachers may form biases, consciously or unconsciously, that affect the quality of education the student receives.
Parents may also face challenges. They could be held financially responsible for legal costs and may need to adjust work schedules to attend court hearings or school meetings.
Criminal Sentencing Alternatives for High School Students
Several alternative sentencing options are available for high school students who are arrested and found guilty of a crime.
These alternatives aim to rehabilitate rather than merely punish to prevent re-offending. It’s essential to consult with a San Antonio criminal defense attorney for case-specific advice, but let’s discuss some commonly used alternatives.
Some jurisdictions offer diversion programs for first-time offenders, focusing on education and community service instead of incarceration.
Successful completion of a pre-trial diversion or diversion program often results in charges being dropped or expunged.
Instead of incarceration, a juvenile may be placed on probation, during which they must adhere to certain conditions like regular check-ins with a probation officer, curfews, or school attendance.
Often given for lesser offenses, community service allows juveniles to give back to the community as a form of restitution.
Restorative Justice Programs
These involve mediated discussions between the offender, the victim, and sometimes community members. The aim is to make the offender aware of the real human impact of their actions and come to an agreement on making amends.
Drug or Alcohol Rehabilitation
For substance-related offenses, rehab can be ordered to address the underlying issues contributing to criminal behavior. This may also include random drug tests to assure compliance.
Counseling and Therapy
For crimes stemming from behavioral issues or mental health problems, the court can order therapy or counseling as part of the sentence.
Some courts may mandate attendance in educational courses dealing with issues related to the crime committed, such as anger management or drug education classes.
In some cases, confinement may be served at home. This is often enforced through electronic monitoring and is usually for more intensive situations that don’t quite meet the need for juvenile detention.
This involves an agreement to delay prosecution while the juvenile undergoes an alternative program. If completed successfully, charges may be dropped.
Teen or Youth Court
In some areas, peer-led teen courts offer a form of restorative justice. Sentencing options usually include community service or educational workshops, and successful completion often leads to charges being expunged.
Some programs involve therapy or education for both the offender and their family. This aims to address family dynamics that may contribute to delinquent behavior.
Are You a College Student Arrested for a Crime?
Arguably, being arrested while attending college or university in Texas can have more significant, severe, and long-lasting ramifications than being arrested in high school.
First, most college students are over 18 and are considered adults as far as the criminal justice system is concerned.
High school students are typically minors, and in Texas, juvenile offenses are generally sealed when the child turns 18. Adult college students get no such automatic sealing of their criminal records.
Also, depending on the severity of the offense, students could face penalties ranging from fines and community service to imprisonment.
Texas’s strict criminal justice laws mean that even misdemeanor charges can result in significant punitive measures.
Academically, an arrest can lead to disciplinary actions by the institution, including academic probation, suspension, or expulsion.
Many colleges have codes of conduct that students agree to abide by, and an arrest could be considered a violation of these terms.
Furthermore, specific fields of study, like law, medicine, or education, may have ethical standards that an arrest could compromise, potentially disqualifying the student from continuing in that major or future licensure.
Financial and Social Consequences
Financially, the arrest could jeopardize scholarships, grants, or work-study programs. Some financial aid programs have stipulations that disqualify students with criminal records.
The arrest can also cast a long shadow over future career prospects. Many employers conduct background checks and may hesitate to hire someone with a criminal record.
Certain professions that require state licensure could be out of reach for those convicted of a crime. Socially, individuals may experience stigmatization, affecting both personal relationships and networking opportunities.
Sentencing Alternatives for Texas College Students
In Texas, college students arrested and convicted of a crime may have access to various alternative sentencing options designed to rehabilitate and educate rather than merely punish.
These alternatives can be particularly important for students concerned about the long-term consequences of a criminal record.
One option is a diversion program, often available to first-time offenders. Successful completion can result in the State dismissing the charges.
You might also be able to get your record expunged at some point, but only certain offenses qualify, and you typically have a waiting period.
Probation is another common alternative, requiring regular check-ins with a probation officer and compliance with certain conditions.
If you can get deferred adjudication probation, you will be able to secure a dismissal on your record and likely get the offense removed through a nondisclosure order, which is similar to an expungement.
For substance-related offenses, the court may order drug or alcohol rehabilitation programs. Some courts mandate educational courses focusing on issues related to the offense, like anger management or drug education.
Community service is another widely used alternative that allows the offender to give back to the community. Restorative justice programs, which involve mediated discussions between the offender and the victim, may also be an option.
It’s crucial to consult a legal professional experienced in Texas law to explore these alternatives fully, as eligibility often depends on the nature of the offense, the individual’s criminal history, and other extenuating factual circumstances.
Get in Contact With a San Antonio Criminal Defense Lawyer Today
If you feel as though your son or daughter is acting out, displaying behavior problems, and unable to see their future, call us now. Not only do we handle criminal accusations, but we are trained to assist you and your family get back on track.
We have helped hundreds of young men and women realize the consequences of their actions and open their eyes to what a future might look like if they were to become convicted of a crime. We will do everything in our power to assist your family in getting back on track.
To speak to an experienced criminal defense lawyer in San Antonio, Texas, please contact us today.