We all know that it is illegal for a person under the age of 21 years old to consume alcohol. Law enforcement officers throughout Salt Lake City, and the surrounding areas take an aggressive approach to enforcing the laws in Utah that prohibit the underaged possession of alcohol by a minor child or young adult.
Under Utah law, a person under the age of 21 may not have a measurable amount of alcohol in their body. §32B-4-409(1)(f). A person under 21 years of age with a measurable amount of alcohol in their body can be charged with the crime of “minor in possession.”
A conviction for “minor in possession” is a class B misdemeanor which is punishable by a term of imprisonment for up to 6 months and a fine of up to $1,000.00 plus a 90% surcharge.
If you were charged with being a minor in possession of alcohol, public intoxication, or underaged drinking, then contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at Brown, Bradshaw & Moffat, LLP. Our attorneys represent young people charged with a crime throughout Salt Lake City and the surrounding areas. Call (801) 532-5297 today to discuss your case.
Overview of Minor in Possession in Utah
Utah Code Section 32B-4-409 prohibits a minor from purchasing alcohol, attempting to purchase alcohol, soliciting another person to purchase alcohol, possessing alcohol, or consuming alcohol. A violation of this criminal statute is punishable as a Class B misdemeanor with a maximum penalty of up to 6 months in jail and a $1,000 fine. In addition, your driver's license can be suspended.
A first offense is punishable as a class B misdemeanor. Additionally, the statute provides that the court may:
The statute provides that for a second conviction the court shall:
Additionally, when the young person who committed the offense is 18, 19, or 20 years old, then the court must suspend the minor's driving privileges. The court may reduce or shorten the suspension period for a first conviction if:
For a second or subsequent offense, the court may reduce or shorten the suspension period if:
For a juvenile who is 13, 14, 15, 16, or 17 years old who is found guilty of the offense, the court must suspend the juvenile's driving privileges.
It is a defense to the crime of minor in possession of alcohol in Utah if the young person’s consumption of an alcoholic product was for one of the following purposes:
Utah law also provides for other related offenses related to the use or possession of alcohol by a young person who has not yet reached their 21st birthday including:
If you were charged with any violation of Utah Code Section 32B-4-409, 32B-4-410, or 32B-4-411, related to the possession of use of alcohol, then contact an experienced criminal defense attorney at Brown, Bradshaw & Moffat, LLP. The attorneys at Brown, Bradshaw & Moffat, LLP represent young people charged with drug abuse and alcohol abuse crimes throughout the greater Salt Lake City area and the surrounding areas in Utah.
We also represent clients for underaged drinking and driving offenses and being intoxicated in public. Call us today to discuss your charge, potential penalties, and important defenses. Call (801) 532-5297 today to discuss your case.
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