In every state, it is illegal for an individual under the age of 21 to purchase and consume alcohol under most circumstances. Despite this law, young adults on college campuses across the nation regularly imbibe. When they do, they face the possibility of being charged with underage drinking.
Keep in mind that despite its prevalence, underage drinking is a crime. When your child is facing an underage drinking charge, he or she is facing legitimate criminal penalties that can permanently impact his or her life. If you are a Wright State University student or a parent of a student, understand that it is possible to fight an underage drinking charge.
In Ohio, underage drinking is a first-degree misdemeanor. The penalties for this conviction are:
A college student found guilty of underage drinking can also face additional penalties, like having his or her scholarship or student housing privileges revoked. In some cases, students found guilty of underage drinking face expulsion. When an underage student is found guilty of drinking in a motor vehicle, he or she also faces a driver’s license suspension.
When students drink, underage drinking is not the only criminal charge they can face. Depending on their actions while and after drinking, students can face the following charges:
Even a student who is old enough to legally buy alcohol can face charges related to underage drinking. He or she can face a first-degree misdemeanor charge for supplying minors with alcohol and if a person under 21 goes on to suffer an injury, injure another person, or cause property damage after consuming alcohol provided by your of-age child, your son or daughter may be liable for any damages that arise.
Talk to your child about his or her rights, such as the right to remain silent during interactions with law enforcement and the right to have a lawyer represent his or her case.
Work with an experienced lawyer to determine the most effective way to fight the charge. Depending on the circumstances of the case, the best outcome might be the charge being dismissed, a plea bargain, or your child’s participation in a pre-trial diversion program, where he or she can get help for addiction issues.
When your college-age daughter or son is facing an underage drinking charge, you need to be proactive and develop an effective legal defense strategy for him or her with an experienced criminal defense lawyer. Underage drinking is often a mistake, but it should not be the mistake that ends your child’s college career. To schedule your initial consultation with a member of The VanNoy Firm, contact our office today.
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