It is an unfortunate reality of today’s world that teenagers are more often involved in weapons charges. From the Washington Post, we see the story of 17-year-old Patrick S. Yevsukov, who pleaded guilty on January 9, 2009, to charges stemming from the discovery last summer of firearms and explosives at the home of a friend, Collin McKenzie-Gude of Bethesda.
Given the highly-charged political climate calling for increased criminal penalties, teenagers in weapons cases are often charged as adults. In Yevsukov’s case, he was charged as a juvenile and eventually pleaded guilty to two counts of manufacture or possession of an explosive device, along with unauthorized access to a computer and theft.
McKenzie-Gude’s case is still pending. An earlier Post story details the efforts of the defense attorney for McKenzie-Gude, who asked that he be charged as a juvenile since the events associated with the crime took place while he was seventeen.
The prosecution has pressed very hard to prove that some of the crucial events in the case took place after McKenzie-Gude’s eighteenth birthday, thereby settling the issue of whether to charge him as an adult or a juvenile.
It is important to realize that even though someone has been charged with a crime, he or she has rights. In the instance of a teen charged as an adult with guns or weapon crimes, those rights are in danger of being unjustly taken away. If you have any questions or concerns about teenagers being charged as adults in Maryland weapons crimes, please contact Alpert Schreyer Poe, LLC toll-free at (301) 321-7277.