The Carlton County Attorney’s Office represents Carlton County Human Services in child protection cases. These cases involve children in Carlton County who have been abused and/or neglected. The County Attorney's office provides legal advice and drafts legal documents for Human Services. The goal of these cases is to keep the child safe and ultimately provide services so that family unit can be maintained or reunified. In cases where the child cannot be safely reunited with the parents, the County Attorney's office will file a permanency petition, which could include a Termination of Parental Rights Petition (severance of the parent/child relationship, making the child eligible for adoption) or a Transfer of Permanent Legal and Physical Custody to a Relative.
The County Attorney's Office also is the prosecutor in all cases involving juvenile offenders. These range from curfew violations to the most serious felony offenses. The County Attorney also oversees Restorative Justice, a diversion program that allow juvenile offenders to receive consequences without going to court. These programs are intended to hold the juvenile accountable and often include an educational component to reduce repeat offenses.
In more serious offenses, the County Attorney's Office may ask the Court to certify a juvenile to stand trial as an adult. If convicted of a crime as an adult, the juvenile could receive all potential adult sanctions, including a prison sentence.
Juveniles who are cited for driving under the influence after the age of 16 years are handled in adult court and receive the same sanctions as an adult.
The County Attorney's Office is not authorized to provide legal advice to private citizens. The County Attorney’s Office ethically cannot speak to a party who is represented by an attorney.