You are working with your state’s Crime Prevention Commission as a counselor. In the course of your work you encounter John, a 14-year-old juvenile offender charged with vandalism and assaulting a police officer while being taken into custody.
John would like to have legal counsel at his hearing. He is fearful that he will receive the harshest adjudication possible because he slugged a police officer. He has asked you to explain the laws regarding juveniles’ right to counsel because he does not understand whether he has the right to an attorney.
Explain the rights that John enjoys with respect to representation by counsel. In your opinion does John need an attorney in a system that is supposed to be acting in the best interest of the child? What will you suggest to him and why?