In most circumstances, a juvenile charged with a criminal offense will be taken to a Department of Juvenile Justice (DJJ) detention facility, either in Okaloosa County or Walton County, where they will be processed and held until the next day.
Within approximately 24 hours of the arrest, a Detention Hearing is held. There, a circuit judge must decide, based on the severity of the crime alleged and a variety of risk factors, whether or not to place the child in secure detention (for up to 21 days) or allow the child to return home.
However, there are situations where a juvenile offender will be taken to the jail in Okaloosa County or Walton County.
Especially in cases where they may be charged as an adult, law enforcement and corrections officers have discretion to use a more secure facility.
In those situations, a defendant will attend the first appearance hearing in lieu of a detention hearing. At the first appearance, normally a monetary bond will be set.
If your son or daughter under 18 has been arrested in Fort Walton Beach, Destin or anywhere in Okaloosa County or Walton County, give me a call, day or night, at (850) 362-6655 so we can discuss how to get them back home.