A teen who is unable to make most adult decisions is now being treated as one in a criminal case. In Texas, the legal age to be tried for a crime as an adult is only 17-years-old. Because of this law, a lack of judgment and Gatorade ultimately culminated in a felony charge for one Texas high school boy.
Police allege that a 17-year-old high school student and three others wriggled underneath a school cafeteria door in order to grab some snacks. The items taken included protein bars, a lemonade and a couple of Gatorades. This totaled up to what is likely less than $20 in snacks.
Now, instead of being in school, the boy is behind bars and facing felony charges for burglary. If he is convicted, he could ultimately be sentenced to jail for anywhere between six months and two years. His girlfriend, who was reportedly with him during the incident, is a year younger and facing lesser charges that likely will not appear on her record. As a young, 17-year-old boy who hasn't even graduated from high school yet, an alleged $20 lapse in judgment could severely impact his future.
Facing a felony charge at such a young age can be a terrifying and confusing time for any teenager. Despite his age, this high school student is still viewed as an adult per Texas state law. Although every individual case is different, the defense may try to argue that his age should either warrant a lesser conviction or even a dismissal of the charges altogether. However, if the felony charges are dismissed, little can erase the arrest from his record short of an expunction.
Source: keyetv.com, Teen Faces Felony For Alleged Food Theft, Melanie Lofton, Feb. 7, 2014