This page was created to educate our youth, parents, and youth workers on the seriousness and consequences of juvenile crime, and to assist the families of alleged juvenile justice-involved individuals, so that they may better understand the juvenile justice system.

By detailing what happens to a child when he or she commits a delinquent act in Mohave County, we hope that all youth will gain an appreciation of the ramifications of juvenile delinquency, both on themselves and their parents or guardians.

Getting Arrested

A Juvenile Criminal Case is initiated by any of the following:

citation is issued by a police officer. A citation requires the juvenile to meet with a probation officer at the Probation Department at a later date or to appear in Juvenile Court. Youths facing criminal charges can also be arrested by the police and released to their parents, with the charges filed by mail with the Probation Department and/or District Attorney's Office.

Youths already on probation can be re-arrested by the police or probation officers for probation violations. An officer can arrest a juvenile for a crime. When the crime is too serious to release the minor, the officer is given the discretion to take the minor into custody and book him into the county Juvenile Hall located in Kingman. For a minor to be arrested, the officer must have a specific reason, such as committing a criminal act or violating the terms of probation.

When a juvenile is arrested, the officer performs a clothed-body search referred to as a "pat-down" search. The officer then puts handcuffs on the juvenile and places him or her in a patrol car. The juvenile is then transported to Juvenile Hall for booking.

In the event you are arrested, the following rules should be kept in mind when dealing with the police:

Never resist arrest, no matter how unreasonable the arrest may seem. Resisting arrest is illegal. If a police officer comes to your home with a search warrant, you must permit the officer to search your home.

Booking into Juvenile Detention

What it means to be booked and admitted into Juvenile Detention Facility:

It means that a police or other law enforcement agency has alleged the minor has committed a criminal offense and has brought that young person to Juvenile Detention for admission.   If admitted, the juvenile loses the freedom to come and go, and must conform to all rules and regulations of the institution.

Decisions on whether to formally detain the youth pending a hearing in front of a Juvenile Court judge are made after the booking procedure.

When a minor is booked into Juvenile Detention:

The juvenile arrives by police vehicle into an enclosed drive-up area.   He remains in the vehicle handcuffed until the gates are closed behind him.

If the juvenile has been injured in a car accident, is otherwise hurt or is intoxicated with drugs or alcohol, he or she will be taken to a medical facility for treatment before being booked into the detention facility, then may be returned to Juvenile Detention for booking

The handcuffs are removed.

A clothed body search of the minor is performed. The minor empties all pockets, and removes his shoes, and then the clothing and shoes are checked for contraband. If the intake and booking areas are busy, the minor will be placed in a holding cell or secured to the booking bench until they can be further processed.

Until now the juvenile has been wearing his street clothes. A Juvenile Detention Officer of the same sex will escort the juvenile to a private shower area where:

  • The juvenile is strip searched to ensure no contraband (such as narcotics, weapons, matches, lighters) has been brought in.
  • The juvenile takes a shower and is issued clean clothes (underwear, socks, shoes, pants and T-shirt).
  • The juvenile is assigned to an housing unit.
  • The juvenile is further evaluated to determine the following:
  • Emotional level and suicide risk
  • Drug history
  • The presence of tattoos and body piercing's
  • Gang affiliation
  • Medical history
  • Juvenile is photographed.
  • Juvenile is examined by the medical staff:
  • A nurse will retrieve urine samples and take vital signs.
  • The juvenile will get a complete physical examination within 72 hours of booking.
  • The parents are contacted to review medical history.
Appearing in Court

If a juvenile has been arrested and the police and probation officer or juvenile detention officer (depending on the time of arrival) have determined that he or she should be booked into Juvenile Detention Facility, the law requires that within 24 hours after the Attorney's Office files the charges in Juvenile Court (excluding weekends and holidays), the juvenile must be brought before a judge in Juvenile Court for a detention hearing.

The purpose of a Detention Hearing is for the judge to determine whether the juvenile should remain in custody or be released to his or her parents or guardian.   The following people must be present at the detention hearing: the juvenile, his or her parents or guardian, the juvenile's attorney and a Deputy Probation Officer.   Unlike the adult system, youthful offenders do not receive jury trials and are not released on bail.

The judge begins the hearing by advising the juvenile of his or her rights.

  • The right to an attorney
  • The right to remain silent
  • The right to a non-jury trial to determine if he or she committed the crime as charged
  • The right to see all witnesses called to testify against him or her
  • The judge must also advise the juvenile of the specific charges filed against him or her

At this stage of the hearing, the judge will hear from the different participants to determine the detention status of the juvenile.

  • The Deputy Probation Officer will give a brief history of the juvenile regarding his prior record, current offense, relevant school information and family situation.
  • The Deputy Probation Officer will make recommendations to the court regarding continued detention at Juvenile Detention or release to the custody of his parents.
  • The Deputy District Attorney will give statements regarding the circumstances of the crime based on the police report.
  • The juvenile's attorney and parents also have an opportunity to comment on whether the juvenile should remain in custody.

After hearing all testimony, the judge decides if the circumstances warrant continued detention or to return the juvenile to his or her home.

A judge may order continued detention if a juvenile:

  • Has violated a court order
  • Is a risk to flee the court's jurisdiction
  • Poses a threat to other persons or property, or is a danger to him or herself
  • Is shown to be a repeat offender


Kingman . 809 E. Beale St. 86402 . (928)753-0741

Lake Havasu City . 2001 College Drive # 129. 86404 . (928)453-0707

Bullhead City . 967 Hancock. Suite 25. 86442 .(928)758-0738

Arizona Strip . St. George Ut, 84790. 352 E. Riverside Dr., Suite B2 (928)279-0329