Going to college or university comes with many newfound freedoms for young people—with that freedom comes legal responsibilities. Facing criminal charges can be terrifying for a student with much to lose. Even if their case does not end in a conviction, they could still face disciplinary action from their school and other negative consequences for their future.
No matter what circumstances led to you or your child facing criminal allegations, guidance from a defense attorney could be vital to resolving the case favorably. From beginning to end of the legal process, a Danbury student defense lawyer at Ruane Attorneys could tirelessly protect your rights and fight for your future.
The Difference Between Criminal Trials and School Conduct Hearings
In addition to state law defined by the Connecticut Penal Code, college students are also subject to the Code of Conduct set out by their educational institution. While the two sets of rules cover much of the same territory, each contains different processes for investigating and punishing violations.
For instance, college students facing school disciplinary proceedings do not have the same constitutional rights as criminal defendants. They do not necessarily have the right to remain silent or have legal representation appointed to them. Additionally, guilt in a criminal court must be proven “beyond a reasonable doubt,” whereas school conduct boards often have much looser standards of proof for imposing sanctions against students.
It is also important to note that something legal under state law may be prohibited under a school’s Code of Conduct. Students facing criminal charges or school violations should consult a Danbury attorney to better understand the allegations and potential consequences they face. Often, accused students must defend themselves in court as well as in school disciplinary hearings; a lawyer could help prepare for both and offer dedicated representation wherever possible.
What Could Legal Counsel Help With?
Our defense lawyers in Danbury have helped students handle both misdemeanor and felony criminal charges. Common charges that students face include but are not limited to:
- Disorderly conduct
- Public intoxication
- Underage drinking, or providing alcohol to minors
- Underage possession of alcohol or marijuana
- Drug possession and distribution
- Physical assault
- Sexual assault
- Shoplifting and other forms of theft
- Drunk driving
- Possession of a fake ID
While legal counsel often cannot accompany a student into school disciplinary proceedings, they can assist with preparing for hearings. Working on a defense strategy with a lawyer at our firm can help students improve their chances of securing a positive result and protecting their future.
Get in Touch with a Danbury Student Defense Attorney Today
Even a misdemeanor conviction while you are attending college or university can have a devastating impact, both on your career and civil rights and freedoms. A mark on your record can lead to harsher sentencing should you face criminal allegations again in the future, in addition to hurting your prospects for employment and housing. Fortunately, support is available from defense attorneys who are prepared to fight for your rights and best interests throughout the criminal prosecution and school disciplinary process.
A conversation with a Danbury student defense lawyer could provide clarity on the next best steps to take. Do not take any chances when your future is on the line. Call Ruane Attorneys to get the tireless representation you need.