I was at a small party, with maybe 15 people. I drank a beer, and just took a few sips out of a second when the cops show up. Some people ran and tried to hide, but I sat down in their clear view and stayed calm. I was respectful and honest the entire time. All he took down was my name and birthday, and he asked if I was 21, my response was no. The follow up question, was if I had been drinking, and I said yes. After a while, everyone felt natures call, and the officer was patting people down before they could use the restroom, but when I went he said "Hey bud, you haven't given me a reason not to trust you. Some of those other guys have been trying to flush stuff down the toilet. As long as you don't have anything on you, you're good." A few hours go by, and he starts to breathalyze everyone. When I go up I tell him that I had full intentions of spending the night at the house, and showed that my car keys weren't on me. The officer had me go sit back down, and he tested everyone else. I did take the breathalyzer at the very end, but he never told me what I blew. He asked if I was spending the night, or calling a ride. But right after he said that, he pointed to my friend, and said "he's 0.00 if you want he can drive your car for you.". When everything was said and done, one person was arrested, but no tickets or citations were issued. The highest ranking officer said some of us should expect letters from the prosecuter. Will I recieve a letter, and/or an MIP?
Here in the State of WA these are common occurances, when there is a party and several names are taken and then they have to keep all the information and IDs straight. I believe that there is a very large chance the state will charge you with underage drinking. Talk to an attorney there in your area and get the information you need to hire an experienced criminal defense attorney that handles these type of cases all the time. I wish I lived in MO so that I could help you.
To answer your direct question, yes, charges are sometimes brought even when an individual is not issued a citation or ticket on the spot. For minor offenses, you may just receive a summons in the mail.
Sounds like the prosecutor will be reviewing the officer's report and will issue charges where he or she believes charges are appropriate. I'm not sure anyone here will be able to predict whether the prosecuting attorney will or will not bring charges, but if charges are brought, an experienced criminal defense attorney in your area should be able to help avoid a conviction for this charge.
Criminal Defense Attorney
Yes, charges can be brought at a later time as the officer indicated. The determination will be up to the prosecutor. The prosecutor may or may not charge you. If you are charged, hire a local criminal defense attorney. A good attorney may be able to negotiate a lesser offense.
The following is not legal advice, but general information. The information may be inapplicable or some exception to these general principles may apply depending on the specific circumstances of your case. The Ditch Law Firm is based in Jefferson City and serves nearby communities including Boone, Callaway, Cole, Maries, Miller, Moniteau, Morgan and Osage counties.
Criminal Defense Attorney
If the party was in Greene County, the officer may be referring to a letter allowing you to go through a diversion class (it's an 8 hour class offered on Saturdays) to avoid being prosecuted. Whether the course is offered or not is up to the prosecuting attorney's office and if the class is not offered (or you decide not to attend), the prosecutor may still file charges. I would be glad to talk with you further if you'd like. 417-720-1098.