Charges for drunk driving and illegal possession of alcohol as a minor are no small matter. While it may seem like a minor infraction, being arrested and convicted of minor in possession of alcohol can damage a young person’s record, bring about heavy fines and fees, and result in probation or other punishments.
Arrested for underage DUI or possessing alcohol as a minor? Call the Denver DUI lawyer from the firm today at 303-595-4342.
Is Minor in Possession a Serious Charge?
Just because an underage individual isn’t driving or charged with DUI doesn’t mean they can’t face serious criminal charges for possessing alcohol. If you are under the age of 21 and are found with alcohol in a vehicle (or any other place), you could face serious and life-altering repercussions. Under Colorado’s Illegal Possession or Consumption of Ethyl Alcohol by an Underage Person law (C.R.S. 18-13-122), possession or consumption is considered a petty offense. Don’t be deceived—while a first offense may only warrant a fine of no more than $250 and a loss of driving privileges, subsequent charges bring about even more severe consequences.
You can face the following penalties for additional convictions:
- Second conviction: Up to $500 in fines and six-month license suspension
- Third or subsequent conviction: Offense elevated to a Class 2 misdemeanor
- Up to $1,000 in fines
- Up to 12 months in jail
- One-year license suspension
- Community service and alcohol assessment
- Alcohol treatment / education program
These are only the penalties for being found in possession of alcohol. These repercussions can be added on to a charge of underage DUI, which can carry even more severe consequences in Colorado.
What Penalties Does Underage DUI in Colorado Carry?
- Minimum of two years of probation
- Loss of driver’s license for one year
- Legal fees and fines reaching up to $3,500
- Up to one year in jail in extreme cases
- Possible substance abuse treatment for six months
In Colorado, Zero Tolerance Laws are enforced against drivers under the age of 21. What does this mean for an underage driver? If they are found with a blood alcohol content above .02, they could be charged with driving under the influence of alcohol. How does this compare to regular DUI charges? The typical BAC amount used to gauge intoxication is .08, which means a young driver could have just a minimal amount of alcohol in their system and still warrant charges.
DUI and alcohol possession charges call for serious defense. You need to reach out to Richard B. Huttner to discuss your case with a Denver DUI defense attorney.