“if a juvenile in Buffalo NY is convicted of assault with a deadly weapon, what’s the realistic punishment going to be?”

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Because of the limited information here, it is difficult to guess. Throughout the course of plea bargaining your Criminal Lawyer in Buffalo NY should emphasize any mitigating factors, including, the age of the offender, sympathetic events in the offender’s life, and bad acts on the part of the alleged victim. Overall, the goal is to remind the District Attorney that this is a person who made a mistake and ultimately, no matter how bad the mistake may have been, it is not fair to judge a person based on that singular event.

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On the other hand, if this was consistent with the alleged offender’s past pattern of behavior, it is probably best to focus on environmental factors which lead the person to be in this position.

One final point to consider is that if one is (1) convicted or pleads guilty to a felony; and (2) has no prior record, he or she may be eligible, under New York CPL 720.35, for Youthful Offender Status. However, in the case of a felony conviction, whether youthful offender status is granted is within the discretion of the court.

If granted, a youthful offender record is not a criminal record, is automatically sealed, and does not have to be reported on any applications for college or work as a criminal conviction. It also does not disqualify a party from holding public office or public employment. For a youthful offender, the maximum sentence is four years in jail. For all of these reasons, if available as an option, youthful offender status should be pursued.

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For more questions, contact a Criminal Attorney in Buffalo NY today.

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