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Joyride on forklift leads to teenagers facing felony charges

It is not uncommon for teenagers to be mischievous, but sometimes the actions of teens can get them in trouble with the law. What starts out as a bit of fun can escalate and result in offenses that will land teens in court and in need of experienced criminal defense attorneys to protect their rights. Five Florida teens were recently caught on surveillance cameras as they took a joyride on a company's forklift, and four of them are now facing felony charges.

The teenagers reportedly entered the premises of a plumbing company in Tamarac after walking through the grounds of an adjacent school. During their antics, the alarm was activated, and deputies arrived to arrest the kids after a chase on foot. After evaluating the recordings of the surveillance camera, deputies alleged that it was not a case of teenage mischief, because the kids tried to avoid being identified by pulling their T-shirts up to cover their faces. They also intentionally avoided leaving prints by pulling plastic bags over their hands.

In addition to unlawfully riding on the forklift, two of the company's fire extinguishers were discharged on the premises and discarded in the woods nearby. Following their arrests, four teenagers were charged with felonies related to theft, burglary and resisting arrest. The fifth teen received a civil citation for misdemeanor trespassing, and he will have the opportunity to do a civil citation program to avoid having a criminal record.

Although juvenile records are sealed after adulthood is reached, it can count against adults in future sentencing for adult crimes. Florida parents whose children got into trouble that led to felony charges may want to consult with experienced criminal defense attorneys. The minors' legal rights will be explained, and, after assessing the circumstances, lawyers can guide the parents through juvenile court proceedings.

Source: upi.com, "Florida foursome facing felonies for forklift foolery", Ben Hooper, April 17, 2015

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