We all see how the media portrays alcohol. TV commercials tell us alcohol is refreshing, exciting, and popular. Movies sometimes show teens drinking together and having a good time. With attractive displays of alcohol in the media, it is understandable that many underage kids would be interested in drinking. After a rock concert one night, a recent underage drinking news story revealed that several minors were found with alcohol. These kids ranged from 15 to 20 years old and clearly did not understand the dangers of alcohol use. An adult was suspected of providing alcohol to one of the 15-year-olds. If the kids in this story lived in Arapahoe or Douglas County, they would face charges of Minor in Possession of Alcohol, while the adult would face charges of Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor, a felony.
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What is Minor in Possession of Alcohol in Denver?
If a person consumes or possess alcohol while under the age of 21 in Colorado, they could be charged with Illegal Possession or Consumption of Ethyl Alcohol or Marijuana, or as it was formerly called – Minor in Possession of Alcohol (MIP), C.R.S 18-13-122. According to C.R.S. 18-13-122(3)(a):“A person under twenty-one years of age who possesses or consumes ethyl alcohol anywhere in the state of Colorado commits illegal possession or consumption of ethyl alcohol by an underage person. Illegal possession or consumption of ethyl alcohol by an underage person is a strict liability offense.”
Since the kids' ages ranged from 15 to 20 years, they are under the legal drinking age in Colorado, which is 21 years. Since they were also found in possession of alcohol, they would face Minor in Possession of Alcohol charges. If this is the first time the teenagers were found with alcohol, a judge could order them to pay up to a $100 fine, as well as complete a substance abuse education program. A second offense could lead to a $100 fine, up to 24 hours of community service and other consequences. However, if this was their third time possessing alcohol, it is likely they would be required to pay $250 in fines, as well as be required to complete an alcohol evaluation, any recommended treatment and community service hours.If you've been charged with Minor in Possession of Alcohol, contact an experienced lawyer to fight on your behalf.
Are There MIP Exceptions in Arapahoe County?
There are. In fact, Colorado law states that underage individuals can consume alcohol on private property under the supervision of their parents, during religious services, during a class, or if they are calling for help for another underage drinker. However, in this particular news story, the students were found at a rock concert, so they would not be exempt under any of these defenses. But, the important thing to note is that these exceptions can work to your advantage if you are charged with MIP. The lawyers at the O'Malley Law Office have a deep understanding of Colorado law and can utilize these exceptions to help you in your defense.
What is Felony Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor in Littleton and Castle Rock, Colorado?
Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor, C.R.S 18-6-701, is:“Any person who induces, aids, or encourages a child to violate any federal or state law, municipal or county ordinance, or court order commits contributing to the delinquency of a minor.”
“Child” means any person under the age of eighteen years. Since the adult at the rock concert was found providing alcohol to a 15-year-old, he could be charged with Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor. This charge is a class 4 felony, which means that someone convicted could spend between 2-6 years in prison. The adult in this news story could have thought the child was over 18 years of age and provided alcohol to the child. Yet, this is rarely a productive defense. Mistake of age is a hard defense to utilize. But, there are many times other defenses can be used in your defense. Get a team of defense lawyers on your side who understand criminal law well.
Why You Need an Experienced Criminal Defense Attorney for Alcohol Charges
Minor in Possession of Alcohol charges can affect teenagers in many ways. They may have a harder time finding a job, applying for scholarships or joining school activities with their friends. The same can apply for someone charged with a felony, like Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor. Many times, young adults who have recently turned 21 agree to furnish alcohol for their friends. This can put their job and even housing at risk. Because there are grave consequences for these crimes, it's crucial to have the best Denver criminal defense lawyers at your side. We care for your future and will be by your side to defend you.
Get Help Now
If you or a loved one is facing Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor or Minor in Possession of Alcohol charges in Colorado, be smart, exercise your right to remain silent, and contact an experienced criminal defense lawyer at the O'Malley Law Office at 303-830-0880 for a free consultation. Together, we can protect your future.Request a Free Consultation
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