Juvenile Court Can Impose Gang Restrictions on Minors

Juvenile offenders have unique rules and legal ramifications with regard to criminal offenses.  For example, in juvenile court, the judge may condition probation on the child’s not being present in any gang gathering area when the child is a self-confessed member of a gang and the offense was a result of gang activity as long as the court specifies that the prohibition applies to an area known to the ward as a gang area.  It may also restrict entry into a certain county when a juvenile has participated in gang activities in that county. California law has found that the condition is consistent with the rehabilitative purpose of juvenile probation.  But the area to be avoided must be specified; thus a condition prohibiting being in an area of known “gang-related activity” must be modified in such a way that the probation officer specifies the areas to be avoided, according to one Juvenile Defense Attorney.  Moreover, the court may require that the child not associate with gangs as a condition of probation even when the child does not yet have a gang affiliation; it is sufficient that the child is in danger of succumbing to gang pressures. In setting forth probation conditions prohibiting association with gang members or wearing gang paraphernalia, the court must specify that in order to violate the condition, the ward must be aware that the associate or piece of clothing is connected with a gang.

About thetorranceattorney

Matthew Ruff is a Torrance criminal defense attorney located near the 405 freeway on Crenshaw Blvd. Focusing on DUI and serious criminal cases for over twenty years. In addition to criminal cases, Matthew also defends clients at the DMV.
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