Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor
Have you ever seen a group of teenagers standing outside of the mini-mart or liquor store just hanging out looking like they have nowhere to be. But what they are really doing is looking for someone to purchase cigarettes or booze for them.
Since cigarettes and alcohol can only be purchased by people of legal age (18 for tobacco products and 21 for liquor), minors under the age of 18 have to get creative to be able to purchase these things. In some cases, they run into an adult who is willing to buy them alcohol or tobacco products.
When a minor convince an adult to purchase alcohol for them, this is the perfect example of contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
By purchasing alcohol or tobacco for minors, you are essentially giving them the opportunity to break the law by taking substances that are illegal to them due to their age.
What Is the Legal Definition of Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor in Nevada
Nevada has specific rules and language about the crime against a person for contributing to the delinquency of a minor. You can face charges if you cause a child under the age of 18 to be in any of the following situations:
- Having no parent or guardian who has proper parental control
- A child is begging on the street or any other public area
- Being destitute without necessities
- Living in a home that is unfit or unsafe for a child
- Living in a brothel
- Keeping the company of known criminals or vagrants
- Entering a bar or saloon
- Consuming alcohol or drugs
- Refusing to obey parents or guardians reasonable orders
- Being habitually late or absent from school
- Leading an immoral life
- Conducting themselves in a indecent or immoral way
- Breaking the law
All these are examples of contributing to the delinquency of a minor. Note that these are different from child abuse which usually involves physical, sexual, or emotional harm.
NRS 201.110—The statute for delinquency of a minor states that “any person who commits any act or omits the performance of any duty, which act or omission cause or tends to cause or encourage any person under the age of 18 to become a “neglected child”, child in need of supervision or delinquent child.”
What Are the Penalties for Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor?
Believe it or not, it is only a misdemeanor for contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
The penalties include:
- Up to 6 months in jail
- Up to a $1000 fine
Jail time, in these cases, is rare for first-time offenders and the delinquency charge can be used as a plea bargain charge for other more serious charges like child endangerment that carries harsher penalties.
Since these are crimes against children judges may be less willing to let the defendant off with just a fine depending on the circumstances. If you are charged with any crime involving a child you’ll need to hire legal counsel immediately to secure a favorable outcome. Crimes against children no matter how small can cause life-altering circumstances for the defendant.
Defenses Against the Charges
The facts of the case are the best way to fight the charges. Some other common defenses are:
- The defendant was falsely accused– In some cases crimes against a person involving children or domestic partners are caused by a mistaken person or as revenge by an ex or angry child. Where someone deliberately accuses someone of a crime that they didn’t commit. Most of the time these charges will be investigated by your legal defense team and found to be baseless and unfounded. Once this happens your attorneys will show in court or to the district attorney the new evidence and the charges should be dismissed.
- There was no delinquency– Just because you are a lazy or bad parent does not mean you are contributing to the delinquency of a minor. For instance, feeding your child processed or “junk” food is not a crime because you are still feeding your child and they are not going hungry. Another example: letting your child watch TV all day is not a crime. Just because we may not like the way a child is being raised or the habits they have doesn’t mean it’s a crime. In some cases, there is a rush to judgment and people are arrested in error.
- The defendant’s behavior was legally protected– Crimes against children cause people, usually police officers, to be overzealous in arresting people who they think are causing delinquency. However, in some cases, adult behavior is protected and legal. For example, parents in Nevada are reasonably able to punish their children by sending them to their room, not letting them participate in certain activities, and depriving them of ONE dinner
These are perfectly protected legal punishments and if you are arrested and charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor a good defense team can present that the charges are false due to the behavior being legal.
Safe Haven Laws
Safe haven laws have been recently adopted in most states. In Nevada, it is permissible for people to lawfully leave babies under 30 days old at the following without fear of prosecution:
- A medical facility like a hospital, an OB-GYN center, or an independent center for emergency medical care.
- A local firefighting agency including a volunteer fire department.
- A law enforcement agency like a police department.
- An ambulance service
- A child care agency like child protective services
People who surrender children under 30 days old to any of these agencies will not face any criminal charges including contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
There are few crimes that are considered related offenses to contributing to the delinquency of a minor. In some cases, these charges are added to the delinquency charge. Remember the prosecutors can charge you with as many offenses that are related to your original charge in order to secure a conviction.
That’s why it’s important for you to hire a defense team as soon as possible. A few of the most common related offenses are:
- Furnishing alcohol to a person under 21– by selling or giving alcohol to an underage person, leaving alcohol in a place with the intent that the underage person will retrieve it, and giving money to an underage person knowing they will use the money to get alcohol.
- Aiding a minor child to possess a gun-letting a child possess a firearm without permission or supervision is a crime. In most cases, it is a misdemeanor but if the child has a violent past it can be charged as a felony.
- Leaving a child in a car unattended-it is illegal to leave a child 8 years or under in an automobile unattended if the conditions are hazardous unless an older sibling or person of the age of 12 or older is in the car as well.
- Luring a child– This is a crime to have contact with a child under 16 or 5 years younger than the defendant with the idea to take the child away from the parent. If the intent was to take the child for sexual purposes the age does not matter. Luring a child can be a felony or a misdemeanor depending on the circumstances.
The penalties for these crimes vary from a misdemeanor with little or no jail time to a felony with the possibility of life imprisonment. Hiring The Defenders gives you the opportunity to get charges reduced or dismissed. The Defenders may be able to get you a plea bargain based on evidence after they have researched your case call today.
Why Hire The Defenders
The Defenders have years of experience defending against contributing to the delinquency of a minor charge. We also take clients that have been charged with are other crimes including financial and white-collar crimes, driving or DUI charges, and all felony criminal charges.
We have expert attorneys on staff who specialize in many different areas of law. Our firm can help get you or your loved one a bail hearing and bail if needed.
In some cases, we have been known to get charges reduced or dismissed based on our own investigation. It is always worth a phone call to set up a case review so we can evaluate your case and tell you what to expect.
Call us today if you have been charged with a criminal offense including contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the penalties for contributing to the delinquency of a minor?
Depending on the circumstances, the penalty can range from a misdemeanor, which can result in little or no jail time, to a felony with the possibility of life imprisonment.
How can I avoid being charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor?
The best way to prevent becoming charged with this crime is to not associate yourself with minors in any criminal activities and also ensure that they remain safe at all times. Additionally, you should never provide alcohol or firearms to minors as these actions can result in much harsher punishments.
What are some related offenses to contributing to the delinquency of a minor?
Furnishing alcohol to a person under 21, aiding a minor child to possess a gun, leaving a child in an unattended car, and luring a child are all related offenses that can be charged along with contributing to the delinquency of a minor.
Can The Defenders help me if I’ve been charged with contributing to the delinquency of a minor?
Yes! The Defenders have years of experience defending against this charge. We also take cases involving other criminal charges such as financial and white collar crimes and driving or DUI charges. Callseverity of your case, you could face fines, probation, or even jail time. some cases, it may be considered a felony.