Juvenile Charged as Adult for Burglary and Grand Theft – Sentenced to Juvenile Probation


State v. J.B.; Case No. 562011CF000640 (St. Lucie County)


Theft and Property Crimes

Arresting Agency

Ft. Pierce Police Department


Juvenile Probation

Count 1 – Burglary of Dwelling While Armed
Count 2 – Grand Theft Firearm
Count 3 – Third Degree Grand Theft
Count 4 – Criminal Mischief $200 or less
The defendant in this case was 15 years old at the time of the incident, and 16 years old by the time the police arrested him. The circumstances involved three teenagers who were at a house party unsupervised by any adults. The bedroom door was kicked down and some jewelry and a firearm were taken from the room. Our client was not the instigator of the incident, but was alleged to have been along for the ride. Eventually our client did lead the police to the location of the stolen firearm, putting him in jeopardy of a potential life sentence under Florida law. It is punishable by life in prison to commit an Armed Burglary in the state of Florida. Although we had some viable defenses, the risk of a trial was too much for our client and his family to endure. The prosecution was seeking permanent adult sanctions, so our client put his faith in our ability to convince the Judge to be fair and sentence him to juvenile sanctions. We prepared a detailed memorandum to the Judge, presented live testimony in an organized fashion, and delivered compelling legal arguments at the sentencing hearing.  The court withheld adjudication of delinquency and our client was sentenced to juvenile probation.