Smyrna, TN asked in Criminal Law for Tennessee

Q: If a 17 year old is caught with 149.5 grams of marijuana and scales in Rutherford county can they be charged as an adult

They were booked into juvenile but will be 18 at time of court date.

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2 Lawyer Answers

Lawrence James Arnkoff

  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Brentwood, TN
  • Licensed in Tennessee

A: Yes they could be charged as an adult regardless of when they turn 18. Since it appears

this is more than a simple possession case the chances of it being removed to adult

court would be greater. They should hire an experienced criminal defense attorney

who might be able to convince the District Attorney's office to keep it in juvenile court.

David C. Veazey

  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Chattanooga, TN
  • Licensed in Tennessee

A: It is not automatic that he would be tried as an adult. Even though he will be 18 before the court date, the offense was supposedly committed before he was 18 and Juvenile Court has jurisdiction over him until he is 19. If the D.A. wanted to try him as an adult, there would have to be a special Transfer Hearing in front of the Juvenile Court Judge to determine whether he would be tried as a juvenile or as an adult.

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