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What obligation does an officer have to notify the parents (also registered owner) when impounding a vehicle driven by a minor?

Kennewick, WA |

A minor (16 years old) was driving on the interstate and was pulled over for speeding. The officer asked to search the car, he stated he smelled marijuana and the minor refused the search. There were 4 total persons in the vehicle, 2 minors. One of the adult passengers (19 years old) was searched and cited for possession of marijuana. The car was impounded and all 4 persons were dropped and left at a parking lot 90 miles from home. The registered owner of the vehicle, also mother of the minor driver was never contacted by police. None of the parents of the minor children were contacted.

Attorney Answers 1

Posted

This will depend on the laws of the state. While there may not be an affirmative obligation per se to notify the registered owner of a vehicle in your situation, it is usually done as a matter of course after the officers do their due diligence. It sounds like you the parents eventually found out about it, so I wouldn't worry about it too much.

I am not your attorney. I do not represent you. This response is submitted for informational purposes only. This is not legal advice, nor is it intended to be taken as such. Anyone considering the above referenced situation should always consult an attorney within the jurisdiction before taking any action based on this, or any other information

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2 comments

Asker

Posted

My question wasn't about notifying the owner of the vehicle, but about notifying a parent of the minor that was dropped off by police in a parking lot 90 miles from home without a vehicle. The 16 year old driver didn't get home until after midnight on a school night.

Asker

Posted

I forgot to say thank you for the reply :)

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