cop if she didn't tell him she was she was going to jail. He never tested her for drinking and the fact was she told him she had a sip. Never in trouble before and can't afford a lawyer. She is in college to become a nurse though she was wrong for having a sip I don't want to see her future shot.
She can ask for a court appointed lawyer. If the court does not appoint her one, you can often find an attorney at the court house who will handle it pretty cheap, especially if you go to court with a few hundred in cash and the attorney is there anyway. Also, she could ask for it to be diverted or expunged. Worst comes to worst, I don't think underage consumption has ever ruined anyone's record.
Please note that my answering this question, does not, in any way, mean I represent you for this, or any other case. You need to seek that actual face-to-face advice of any attorney in your area who can further explain the law as it applies to your case.
if you get a reasonable prosecutor, she may be able to negotiate the charge down to a dismissal after completing various conditions given that she's in college, first time offense and cooperated with law enforcement by accepting responsibility.
The information presented here is for informational purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. The Goodman Law Group, P.C. recommends that you consult an attorney with experience in your specific legal issue. Please contact us to schedule a confidential discussion of your situation. Such communication does not create an attorney-client relationship of any kind until a formal engagement agreement is signed by both you and the Goodman Law Group, P.C.
Does the citation state whether your daughter must report to municipal (city) court or criminal court? Underage drinking citations in my area (Knoxville) that involve violation of a city ordinance are handled at municipal court- dismissal with certain conditions (30 or 60 day pass in which she can acquire no new offenses, full payment of court costs) may very well be a possibility if she has no prior offenses. However, it will be up to the discretion of the judge. It would be beneficial to consult with an attorney in your area regarding the procedure and particular facts of your daughter's case- perhaps an attorney would be willing to offer a free or low-cost consultation.
Be careful about your daughter pleading guilty to any alcohol related charge. A conviction for underage consumption comes with a driver's license suspension. I've seen students at U.T. plead guilty in City Court, take a $ 50 fine, plus court costs and think they got a great deal. A few weeks later the Department of Safety revokes their driver's license.
A lawyer probably won't charge as much as you would expect for an underage consumption charge. Call a few (I would start with James Tucker 931-488-4196) and see what they have to say.
The information you obtain at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for advice regarding your individual situation. We invite you to contact us and welcome your calls. Contacting us does not create an attorney-client relationship. Please do not send any confidential information to us until such time as an attorney-client relationship has been established.
I wish she had remained silent and let the cop take her to jail. Without her statement it sounds like the cop didn't have anything. Every court (and DA) is different, but one thing always remains true - a defendant is more likely to get the best possible resolution to their case if they have an attorney. She should hire one if at all possible, if not possible she should request one be appointed.
You indicate that this is a juvenile matter (although you additionally indicate she is in college). If she is under 18; then, you need to go to court with her and make sure she is represented. The child should talk to no one about the incident until she has spoken with her attorney. Also, make sure that her attorney knows that the child was questioned without your presence or permission. Generally, cops should not be questioning children without the presence or permission of their guardian. In juvenile Court she should only be in danger of being found "delinquent" unless the case is transferred.
If she is over 18; then, she may be diversion eligible, but depending on the circumstances it may be possible to negotiate a dismissal with a little time, effort, preparation, and the aid of an attorney. The rub is that it will likely cost more, or about the same, to get the charge dismissed than to do the diversion program but not as much as it would be if she plead and had probation. Under diversion she will have to complete at least one year, maybe two, of 'probation'. To apply for diversion it will cost $100.00 and on diversion she will have to pay some fee ($100.00 or more) and report periodically. Either way according to the statute involved, a conviction is eligible for expunction after 6 months of the date of the offence. If convicted she can lose her license, but she can also apply for a hardship license.
If she would like, I would be happy to speak to your daughter concerning the best way of resolving this issue based on her specific factual scenario. My number is 931 488 4196.
Legal Disclaimer. This communication is not intended to create, and does not create, an attorney-client relationship between you and James Ronald Tucker, Jr. Thus, your receipt or transmission of information to or from the James Ronald Tucker, Jr. alone does not create an attorney-client relationship or ensure confidentiality. James Ronald Tucker, Jr. assumes no liability for the use or interpretation of information contained herein. The legal information herein provided is for general informational purposes only. It is not intended as professional counsel and should not be used as such. You should contact a competent attorney in your area to obtain advice with respect to any particular issue or problem.
Years licensed, work experience, education
Peer endorsements, associations, awards
Publications, speaking engagements