No one can put their finger on the exact cause of criminal behavior. There are many factors that can lead a person down the road into a life of crime. Although the reason can’t be pinpointed, risk factors can.
Programs like the Michigan Youth ChalleNGe Academy, ran by the National Guard, is one program that seeks to assist kids that have been identified as exhibiting some of these risk factors. It gives them the tools to turn their lives around before it is too late, and best of all, it seems to work.
There are many programs like this across the country, boot-camp style youth academies designed to assist at risk youth. This particular one may be shut down due to lack of funding if things don’t change soon.
The State of Michigan contributes $1 million to the program’s annual funding; this money could be no-more if the Legislature chooses to save that $1 million and put it elsewhere.
Supporters of the program point out its 90% success rate. This article from the Kalamazoo Gazette states that 98% of the graduates from this program are never again involved with the law. This is a staggering number and one that should get the attention of parents, lawmakers, and the community.
Too often when teens like those in the ChalleNGe Academy exhibit signs of heading down the wrong path, no one is there to set them straight. Children raised in poverty, without proper role models, and lack of opportunities, or simply with behavioral problems often resort to crime.
Although 18 might be old enough to face adult criminal charges, it is not too late to get a life on the right track. Luckily for those already caught up in the courts, the Michigan courts have several options for young first time adult offenders.
If this is your first run in with the law and you are looking at drug charges, for instance, you could qualify for probation rather than spending any time in jail. Facing criminal charges is not something that should be done alone.
Call me today to discuss the options that are available to you as a first time or even a repeat offender. It would be my job as your attorney to ensure you get the most beneficial outcome in court.