Québec City Youth Criminal Defence Lawyer

Any confrontation with the police and Crown, especially when you are young, can be traumatizing and carry forward into the future. Canadian law treats youthful offenders aged 12-17, apart from the adult criminal justice system. Juvenile justice in Québec is covered by the Youth Criminal Justice Act, which embeds into the law an understanding of developmental stages that affect judgment as well as a more rehabilitative attitude towards youthful offenders.

Youthful offenders are entitled, under the Youth Criminal Justice Act, to special treatment at all phases of a criminal prosecution, starting with:

  • Bail hearing
  • The right to counsel
  • The rules governing a fair trial
  • Withholding a youthful offender’s name from the media
  • Limitations on police interrogation techniques
  • Sentencing guidelines
  • Sealing of the criminal record

Youthful offenders in Québec need representation from a skilled youth criminal defence lawyer whose experience and compassion will shield and protect them from the harsh consequences of a youthful mistake. Patrick Jacques is just the Québec City Youth Criminal Defence Lawyer for helping youthful offender and their family navigate the criminal justice system with understanding and guidance.

In This Article

What Is Youth Criminal Defence?

The purpose of the Youth Criminal Justice Act is to provide an opportunity to hold a young person accountable for illegal acts and impose a sentence that stresses rehabilitation and return to the community. Just as in any criminal case, the role of the criminal defence lawyer is to find the mistakes that the police and prosecutor have made, to limit the admissibility of evidence, and to advocate for dismissing charges when feasible.

Besides the added protections contained in the Act to guide the Crown in its prosecution, sentencing is different. Here is where a skilled youth criminal defence lawyer really makes a difference. Because there are so many options in sentencing, if found guilty, an effective advocate can help the court fashion a sentence that is tailored to the youthful defendant so that rehabilitation and reentry to the community are paramount.

There are no mandatory minimum sentences under the Youth Criminal Justice Act. The court has great discretion, depending on the facts of the case and the specifics of the youthful offender’s home and school history, to limit punishment.

What are the Possible Consequences of a Youth Criminal Defence Charge?

The judge could choose from an array of lesser sentences that include:

  • Scolding by the judge
  • Discharge of the criminal complaint
  • Discharge of the criminal complaint with conditions restricting activities
  • A fine not greater than $1000
  • An order to compensate a victim for property damage or loss
  • An order mandating personal services to a victim
  • An order mandating community service
  • An order limiting access to weapons
  • An order of probation, no longer than two years
  • An order mandating substance treatment or mental health counselling
  • A jail sentence to be served in the community
  • A delayed jail sentence to allow a period of time to correct behaviours
  • A jail sentence

Once a skilled youth criminal defence lawyer examines the police record and actions by the Crown to ensure that all constitutional and statutory rights are followed, the focus of the defence changes. There are benefits under the Youth Criminal Justice Act once a youthful offender accepts responsibility for any criminal actions. That acknowledgement can provide the judge with an opportunity to divert the defendant out of the criminal process into an extra-judicial program, dismiss the charges, or impose a lesser sentence.

The Importance of Choosing a Skilled Québec City Youth Criminal Defence Lawyer

How can a young person stand against the Crown, with its prodigious authority and ability to investigate, question witnesses, subpoena, and develop evidence? When the Crown targets and apprehends you or a loved one for a criminal offence, only a caring criminal defence lawyer skilled in defending young people can help.

You need a defence lawyer known and respected by the Crown, judges, and police who can make certain the government behaves fairly and consistently with the Constitution and Charter of Rights & Freedoms. You also need your lawyer to possess a vital combination of experience and skills: a thorough understanding of the criminal procedure and the law, proven negotiation skills, familiarity with individual police officers and their tactics, and a command of the courtroom in front of a judge and jury. These are the qualities available to you with Québec criminal defence lawyer Patrick Jacques.

An effective defence depends on introducing reasonable doubt into the Crown’s version of events as to the meaning of physical evidence and the credibility of witness testimony. An effective defence includes reviewing the evidence, the actions taken by the police, and the methods they used to gather evidence to develop a plausible account that undermines the Crown’s version of what happened.

A credible defence develops from the unique facts of each case and generally involves:

  • Examining hard evidence, such as photos, texts, and other documents; reviewing ballistics, forensics, DNA and any other scientific analyses; and scrutinizing witness testimony
  • Assembling new evidence that will undermine the credibility of police, any victims, and other witnesses the prosecution may call
  • Delving into witnesses’ backgrounds and circumstances to discover facts that may impugn their reliability. For example, their judgement may have been impaired by drugs or alcohol, lighting may have been inadequate for them to see what they have claimed, and their testimony may not be plausible based on the actual site where the incident took place.
  • Inspecting police actions for any failure to follow Canadian and provincial law (including the Constitution and Charter of Rights & Freedoms) in their gathering of evidence, interrogations of witnesses, and other activities
  • Making sure that the Crown provides all evidence assembled in their possession in a timely manner to defence counsel
  • Carefully organizing and using this information to develop a strategy and tactics that will create reasonable doubt

Why Choose Patrick Jacques as Your Québec City Youth Criminal Defence Lawyer

Patrick Jacques brings over twenty years of experience and a thorough knowledge of the law to work for his youth clients. In addition, he has a proven record of successful negotiation, a special ability to challenge witnesses and government authority, and a reputation for fearless and ethical defence of his clients.

If you are a young person accused of a crime, choose the personalized, caring representation of Patrick Jacques by calling 418-880-0694 or emailing today to arrange for a free consultation.

If you are the subject of a police investigation or have been arrested and charged as a youth criminal defendant, call or email today to arrange for a free consultation with Patrick Jacques.

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