Virginians who are accused of violent crimes can face severe penalties if they are convicted. This is especially true if it is a murder charge. Even if the alleged perpetrator is under 18, it is possible that he or she will be charged as an adult. For teens who are facing allegations of theft and violent crime, the consequences can be severe. Such is the case for a teen who was stopped for speeding and was subsequently arrested for murder and other charges.

The 17-year-old was driving a 2003 Toyota Avalon when a law enforcement officer stopped him for speeding. He reportedly registered 51 mph in a zone with a 35-mph limit. Initially, the Toyota stopped. However, as the officer exited his cruiser and approached, the Toyota sped away. After a chase, the teen crashed. He was taken to the hospital for serious injuries, and his life was not deemed to be in danger.

When officers searched the vehicle, two firearms were reportedly discovered. The vehicle was found to have been stolen. The driver was subsequently charged with felonies for fleeing law enforcement, grand larceny, theft of a firearm and multiple other charges related to the flight and pursuit. When police went to the home of the person to whom the vehicle was registered, a 75-year-old man was found dead. The teen was then charged with murder.

Being charged with murder will undoubtedly cause fear and concern. For someone who is still a teen, the possibility that their entire life will be radically changed is very real. Regardless of the circumstances, it is imperative that anyone charged with a violent offense from assault to murder think about a cogent defense against the charges. The evidence could be questionable, or there may be alternatives such as a plea bargain in lieu of going to trial. Before making the situation worse, it may be wise to think about a defense with help from a legal professional experienced in criminal law.