A minor in California is a person under the age of 17. Juvenile courts work with children between 10 and 17 years of age. Juvenile courts are dedicated to rehabilitating juvenile offenders, sending them to boot camps, ranches or treatment programs. But, punishment for a crime depends on past offenses and seriousness of the crime.
Crimes committed by minors can be categorized as juvenile delinquency or as status offenses. A charge of juvenile delinquency is brought against a minor for any crime an adult could commit, from shoplifting to murder.
A charge of a status offense is brought against a minor if they commit a crime only a minor could commit: truancy, running away from home, or a curfew violation. These crimes can be either a misdemeanor or felony charge based on the seriousness of the offense.