If an officer places your child under arrest, it is essential to know what his or her rights are and what the law dictates must happen during the arrest and holding processes. You need to ensure that your child gets fair treatment and that law enforcement recognizes his or her rights. At this point, you may be your child’s only advocate until you can secure the services of an attorney.

According to the Texas Attorney General, when an officer arrests your child, he or she will take your child to a juvenile processing office. This may be inside the local sheriff’s office, jail or police station. However, it is an area where your child is separated from adult offenders.

Rules of the holding office

You should note that officers can only hold your child in a juvenile processing office for six hours. In addition, the officer may only hold him or her for the reasons of completing paperwork and other processing actions, to wait for you to pick him or her up, to take a statement or to issue a warning.

In addition, officers cannot leave your child alone in a processing office. You also have the right to be in the office with your child, or you can have an attorney in with your child.

If the officer does not release the child to you or another responsible adult, then the officer must take the child to a juvenile detention center.

Grounds for detention

You should also understand when an officer may take your child into custody. The law says that an officer may only place a juvenile under arrest at the order of a court or probation officer or when he or she violates a law.

One important thing to note is that officers do not actually arrest juveniles. They place them into custody, which means your child does not end up with an arrest record.