Not only are you an excellent attorney, but a good person who truly cared about me and always did your best to help me. I am so grateful for being given a second chance.
—TomDave Shrager successfully lobbied for my felony charge to be completely withdrawn. His services were worth every dime. A highly personable, intelligent, and competent attorney, I would recommend Dave Shrager to my closest friends and family without hesitation.
—RonDave knows the system better than any lawyer in Pittsburgh due to his family's local and long-standing practice, and it was evident in the positive manner in which the judges, prosecutors, and law enforcement officers responded to Dave's arguments on my behalf.
—JimI cannot say thank you enough to David Shrager for all his help today! If it were not for this guy, I would no longer have a job or drivers license. So thanks again Dave, you're the best!
—BillI was in a bad place in my life...I was making bad decisions, which led to my having a really bad night and lots of legal trouble. I'm lucky I had Attorney David Shrager at my side. He helped guide me, with his legal expertise, through a very difficult time in my life.
Call 412-969-2540 to Speak Directly with Attorney David Shrager 24 HOURS A DAY, 7 DAYS A WEEK

Pittsburgh Juvenile Crimes Attorney

Juvenile Crimes & Offense – PA Laws and Penalties

As parents we always want to believe that our child is innocent or incapable of committing even the smallest of crimes. But kids can easily be influenced and fall into bad crowds, not considering their future or the consequences. And sometimes a child may be accused of a crime even though they are innocent and prosecutors don’t see your child as the sweet kid you’ve always known. Instead, they see a person who has been charged with a crime.

Depending on the level of the crime, most prosecutors will push to have your child tried as an adult. However, there are extreme benefits to having your child tried in juvenile court, where the goal is rehabilitation more than punishment/imprisonment.

Whether your child was charged for simple assault, smoking pot or other underage drug crimes, shoplifting, charged with DUI, or accused of a more serious crime, it is important to talk with an experienced and skilled attorney who understands the juvenile court system in Allegheny County and Pennsylvania.

An experienced Pittsburgh Criminal Lawyer can help you understand the rights of your child and the best strategy to fight for those rights. It is our goal to make sure your child is not tried as an adult.

Even if your child is tried as a juvenile, this crime will still be on his or her criminal record and can affect everything from obtaining a driver’s license and an increase in auto insurance premiums to future employment options and the inability to receive student loans or to be accepted into college and universities. A felony adjudication committed between ages 14 – 17 may never be removed from your child’s record, even once they turn 18.

Shrager Defense Attorneys understands that kids make mistakes all the time and that treating them like criminals is only going to turn them into adult criminals. We will treat you and your child with respect and help you understand their rights and how to best defend them.

We know that every parent wants what is best for their child and we will do everything we can to defend the rights of your child and protect their freedom and innocence.






Some juvenile offenses are considered only illegal when a minor commits them or is involved (underage drinking, teen sexting or truancy, for example), while other crimes are of course illegal for anyone to commit (theft, DUI, illegal drug possession, etc.) A juvenile offense is sometimes referred to as a status offense.

Common juvenile offenses include vandalism/graffiti, arson, rioting, underage drinking / DUI, creating or using fake IDs, shoplifting, truancy, violation of probation, traffic violations, sexting, assault and possession of drugs or drug paraphernalia.


If a minor is found to have committed a crime and they are tried in juvenile court, they are classified as “delinquent” instead of a convict.

Probation is an option for most first-time offenders, depending on the crime. Paying restitution and doing community service is a common punishment for less severe crimes. However, more serious crimes could include house arrest (wearing a monitoring device) or placement in juvenile detention outside of the home.


Any child ten years of age or older is deemed a juvenile delinquent if they have gone before a judge and the judge determines they are guilty of the crime. The child or the child’s parents then have 30 days to make an appeal. Having a strong criminal defense attorney by your side at this time is crucial.

In Allegheny County, juvenile offense cases involve three types of hearings: detention, adjudication and disposition.

The detention hearing determines whether or not the child will have to go to a juvenile detention facility, such as The Shuman Center, until the next hearing. The judge will determine whether or not the child is delinquent at the adjudication hearing. From here, you have thirty days to make an appeal. At the disposition hearing the judge may impose a sentence on the child, which could mean any number of possible outcomes.

Once a child is determined to be guilty of a crime by a judge, they are given treatment, supervision and rehabilitative orders at the disposition hearing.


An aggressive and skilled defense attorney who understands the judicial system can fight to avoid serious penalties. In certain cases, a child may be given “deferred adjudication”, which means they are determined guilty of the crime, but if they perform well under probation for a given timeframe, they may be eligible to have the charges dropped. Requirements for deferred adjudication could include drug testing, school progress reports, employment or community service, and participating in drug and/or alcohol rehabilitation programs.

In addition, an attorney can negotiate with the District Attorney or defend the child’s rights before the court on behalf of the child. An aggressive attorney will fight for a plea deal and to have the charges dismissed completely.


At Shrager Defense Attorneys, it is our primary goal to ensure that your child is not tried as an adult, especially for a common crime like marijuana possession, which is a misdemeanor and could come with a sentence of up to one year in jail, as well as a license suspension and a $5,000 fine.

Juvenile cases differ from adult cases in the way the case is adjudicated (judged) and in the penalties that are imposed. Penalties for juvenile crimes are much less harsh and more rehabilitative.

If your child is tried as a juvenile, we work aggressively to prove their innocence and avoid having them placed in extended detention outside the home. We will work hard and tirelessly to fight for the rights of your child so they will not have a criminal record or face harsh punishments, fines and penalties.

Depending on the crime and circumstances, our attorneys may be able to have your child’s record expunged or even sealed against future employers or colleges being able to view your child’s criminal record.

We know that teenagers are easily capable of making mistakes and we want to help them, not punish them. As experienced juvenile criminal attorneys, we will work with the juvenile court officials to avoid having your child put through the juvenile justice system and instead have them complete rehabilitative programs if possible, depending on the crime.

Our goal is to have the charges dismissed altogether so your child can keep their rights and move toward their future.

A crime committed by a child or teenager should not have to affect the rest of their life when there are so many options available. But don’t let your child’s future slip through the cracks by not taking every possible step to protect it – call me, David J. Shrager today for a free consultation.






The Juvenile Act of 1973 states that minors under 18 years of age who are ruled by the courts to not return home, are to be held in a separate facility away from adult criminal offenders. These facilities are known as juvenile detention centers.

A child sentenced by a judge at the disposition hearing to a juvenile detention center or facility faces a very rough road ahead. Instead of the child receiving at-home rehabilitation under the support of family and friends, they could be sent to a detention facility where their only new friends will be troubled teenagers who have probably committed even worse crimes.

Even though a detention center is a far better place than an adult prison, they are still not the most desired place to spend time. The Shuman Center in Allegheny County has come under fire recently for needing reform itself.

Delinquent children and teens with a prior history or who have been tried as adults may be sent to maximum security detention centers, such as the SCI Pine Grove Maximum Security Juvenile Facility in Indiana County.

Whatever kind of trouble your child or teenager has found themselves in, Shrager Defense Attorneys are compassionate attorneys here to help you understand your child’s rights.

Call Attorney David J. Shrager today for a free consultation. He is available by phone or text 24 hours a day, seven days a week – 412-969-2540. He will aggressively fight for your child’s future.


FREE Legal Consultation

Call or Text 412-969-2540 right now for a FREE initial legal consultation.
Speak directly with David J. Shrager 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Shrager Defense Attorneys in Pittsburgh, PA will attack your criminal charges in order to protect your good name. Have a sound and solid case prepared by David J. Shrager and his legal team so they can fight for your rights.