One Mistake Does Not a Bad Person Make

El Segundo Suicide Prevention Lawyer

Suicide & Suicidal Ideation

Teen suicide has been on the rise over the years, with California experiencing one of the highest rates in the nation. At Saros Law APC, we understand that sometimes being there for your children means more than getting them to school on time and putting food on the table. As a parent, you must be prepared to unconditionally support your child through their darkest and most vulnerable moments.

Mistakes have consequences—this is a simple fact, a necessary mechanic of civilized society, and an important coming-of-age lesson. But when teens who have made poor decisions come face-to-face with the justice system, the results can be disastrous.

There is well-established science that demonstrates how the brain of a teenager is not fully developed. Crucially, it lacks the impulse control capabilities of the fully matured adult brain. This is one of the reasons minors below the age of 18 are typically held to a different legal standard than adult defendants.

Being arrested or going to court can be extremely scary and traumatic for a young person. Such an event can have a serious impact on their attitude, self-perception, self-worth, and thoughts about the future. But legal trouble—even in the form of serious criminal charges—does not need to derail a teen’s life.

Our legal strategies and community partners can prevent a criminal case from disrupting your teen’s bright future. We can deal with your difficult situation and move past it so that your child does not get wrapped up in “the system.” All too often, a young person’s first arrest can be the first step in a lifelong cycle of incarceration and despair. It is crucial that we prevent this from happening and demonstrate to your teen that there are people who care about them. A happy and fulfilling future beyond today’s difficult circumstances is within reach.

Working out of our main offices in El Segundo, CA, the criminal defense, juvenile court, and family law experts at Saros Law APC are ready to help families and teens from Greater Los Angeles to the South Bay through their darkest days. We can guide you through even the most complicated and sensitive cases by connecting you to a wealth of resources and offering robust legal strategies. We have a great record of helping troubled teens and their families see a better tomorrow. We are eager to do the same for you.

Teen Suicide: The Facts

  • More than 15% of American high school students have admitted to seriously considering suicide, while 8.9% have made an attempt. Possible risk factors linked to these incidents of teen suicides include psychiatric disorders (like depression and bipolar conduct), gender dysphoria, bullying, social media, family issues, and a family history of depression.
  • Suicide attempts among teenagers are also more prevalent among females, non-Hispanic black high schoolers, and students who identify as part of the LGBTQ community. California has since rolled out several policies to help curb the growing numbers in light of these statewide public health crises.
  • California has one of the highest rates of teen suicide in the United States, at 8.2 deaths per every 100,000 teens annually.

California’s Response: Online Suicide Prevention Training

Former Governor Jerry Brown added AB 1808 as Section 216 of California’s Education Code. This policy seeks to provide funding to schools so they may be able to help middle and high school students with suicidal ideation. The program took effect in April 2020, and schools will essentially provide online training to middle and high school students.

AB 2246

AB 2246 was a similar legislation (now EDC 215) that mandates local educational agencies (LEAs) to adopt a policy model on suicide prevention, intervention, and postvention for pupils in grades 7 – 12. Section 215 seeks to address the needs of high-risk students and provide training and awareness to licensed teachers. The California Department of Education also collaborates with mental health professionals to help LEAs develop their own policies.

Online suicide prevention training is just one of the resources we can connect you with at Saros Law APC. We pride ourselves on being more than a law firm. We live up to this by helping our clients access a comprehensive range of useful assets. You can leverage these while we work through the challenging process of navigating criminal charges.

We are not just another Southern California criminal defense attorney willing to take on juvenile crime cases; we are innovators in the Suicide Prevention Lawyer space. This means we maintain intimate working relationships with community organizations, schools, rehabilitation programs, mental health professionals, judges, and court officials. We put these powerful connections to work for our clients. Founder Alison Saros served 16 years as a Deputy District Attorney in Los Angeles County, so we understand exactly what sort of support people need to find their way through the system effectively.

Warning Signs of Suicide in Teens

The teenage years can be hard for most people. Facing criminal charges due to a poor decision can make them even more difficult. Unfortunately, this can lead to depression and other mental health issues, such as suicidal ideation. In some cases, the sense of hopelessness can even lead to additional juvenile crimes, making it harder to mount an effective legal strategy. Engagement and prevention will be key to helping your child through this difficult period.

As a parent, guardian, or teacher, learning the warning signs of suicide is one way to help prevent more incidents. Children and teens will typically display some or all of the signs below.

  • Frequent bouts of sadness: Everyone gets sad sometimes, and that is perfectly healthy. However, if your teen is experiencing persistent, worsening depression, do not ignore it in hopes that they will “shake it off.” Timely intervention from a mental health professional may be key.
  • Changes in sleeping and eating habits: Teens are notorious for late-night video game and junk food binges. However, major disruptions to sleeping or eating patterns can still offer clues that there is an underlying mental health issue that needs to be addressed.
  • Sudden erratic behavior: When a teen acts strangely, it can be a normal consequence of kids being awkward as they undertake their biological journey. It is important to remember that they lack the impulse control of adults. This must be distinguished from serious, consistent behavior issues, which will need to be addressed by a professional before they manifest as juvenile crimes.
  • Withdrawal from friends and family: It is no secret that some teens have a knack for stirring up conflict with their parents and siblings. However, there is a difference between exploring their familiar boundaries in a healthy way and withdrawing into their own negative thoughts.
  • Complaints about physical symptoms related to emotions (headaches, abdominal pains or fatigue, etc.): When emotional distress is regularly paired with physical discomfort, a general health checkup with your teen’s primary care provider may be needed.
  • A decline in school and social activities: A lack of interest in or care for a teen’s own life is one of the most common indicators of teen depression. Be alert: this change can come slowly, in phases, or seemingly all at once. This depends on the particular environmental, social, and material factors triggering this withdrawal.
  • Substance abuse: Although this is the age at which many young people start getting curious about mind-altering substances, teens should not be using illicit drugs or alcohol. A teenager’s brain is not fully developed, so the consequences of drug or alcohol abuse at this age can be both disastrous and long-term. If your teen is drinking or using recreational drugs, immediate intervention is warranted.
  • Talking about death or dying: While anyone, at any age, can struggle with their personal relationship with death, a sudden fixation on death and dying can be a sign of underlying suicidal ideation that your teen is having trouble expressing in a more direct way. Note that there is an important distinction to be made between a legitimate fixation on dying and an aesthetic taste for death-adjacent imagery (e.g., skulls, heavy music).

Schedule a Consultation With Saros Law APC – Your Trusted Southern California Suicide Prevention Lawyer

As innovators and leaders in the Suicide Prevention Lawyer space, our approach to juvenile criminal defense at Saros Law APC is a little different. We are not just here to help with your court case, but to assist with your mental health challenges and put your life back on track. Teen suicide prevention is not a selling point or a buzzword here. It is a core company principle and a personal passion for every person working with our firm.

Here are some of the ways we can help your teen through the overwhelming process of being charged with, and tried for, a crime:

  • Prevent Suicide: Our first focus has nothing to do with the courtroom. We start by making sure your child is okay. If there are concerns, we can swiftly connect you with the best possible resources to help them overcome whatever aspect of the situation they are struggling with.
  • Understanding Juvenile Crimes: While anyone, even a teenager, has the legal right to go into court without hiring a private attorney, now is not the time to go without expert legal help. Juvenile law can be complex. Knowledgeable representation from Saros Law APC can be an invaluable asset.
  • Charges Dismissed: In the best cases, we may be able to get criminal charges completely dropped. We can demonstrate that your teen is getting the help and support they need to ensure they do not make the same mistake again.
  • Record Expunged: Even if your teen does get convicted, this does not have to stay on their record forever. We can work to have the charges expunged so that they will not follow your teen around in their adult life.
  • Reduced Charges: We can fight to get your charges reduced and ensure that your child is tried as a minor. We believe that children have the legal right to be treated, and tried, as children, even when they have made serious mistakes.

Call Saros Law APC at (310) 341-3466 for criminal defense assistance throughout the South Bay and Greater Los Angeles areas. Please fill out our contact form for new clients.

Schedule a consultation with Saros Law APC

Call Saros Law APC at (310) 341-3466 for criminal defense assistance throughout the South Bay and Greater Los Angeles areas. Please fill out our contact form for new clients.

Saros Law APC is Open and meeting with clients as needed at this time, we are always available by phone or email so we can stay in touch with our clients and colleagues. We have also taken the necessary steps to ensure our office is sanitized routinely throughout the day, to promote the safest and healthiest experience for our employees, clients and guests.