I Got Charged With Underage Drinking
You may have had good intentions, thinking, ”I’ll go to this party, but I’m definitely not going to drink.” The next thing you know, you’re holding a ticket for underage possession of alcohol or weed charges, trying to figure out what to tell your parents.
Don’t just hope it’ll go away and ignore the fast-approaching court date. As uncomfortable as the conversation may be, it’ll be worse if you wait until the last minute to tell mom or dad.
They will be much more upset finding a criminal defense lawyer at the last minute rather than if you tell them as soon as possible. We all make mistakes. Don’t make a second one by waiting.Can I Get My Charges Dismissed?
While it may be possible to obtain a dismissal of charges in certain circumstances, you shouldn’t assume you’re entitled to get your charges dismissed.
Long term, it’s better not to have a prior record. That’s especially true if you’re in the process of applying for college or looking for a good job after college.
Lack of a criminal record or the fact that you’re a “good kid” isn’t going to guarantee you’ll avoid a conviction. The district attorney’s office in Charlotte NC, judges, and police officers take possession charges seriously.
Learning from a mistake starts by taking the steps necessary to work through the problem. The fact you’re looking for an attorney is a good first step.
If you have felony or misdemeanor charges, it helps to have an experienced criminal lawyer by your side in court. We can help you and your parents understand what things will cost and explain legal options as well.
Should I Take the Class for a Dismissal?
“A good deal of the stress associated with getting a ticket, whether for speeding, possession of marijuana, or drug paraphernalia, involves not knowing what to do.”
– Bill Powers, Criminal Defense Lawyer Charlotte NC
Some jurisdictions offer options to avoid a conviction for criminal charges. In Mecklenburg County criminal court, it can be a bit confusing.
Generally speaking, deferred disposition tends to be limited to more minor criminal offenses such as underage consumption, possession of alcohol, and open container violations.
There are some types cases where taking a class and getting your case dismissed just isn’t an option. For example, there is no way to defer ”drunk driving” charges under the NC DWI laws.
There are a multitude of different “deferral” programs that may or may not be applicable to your charges:
- Deferred Prosecution
- Deferred Lite
- 15A Conditional Discharge
- CBI Cognitive Behavioral Intervention
- Community Service
It’s not automatic or guaranteed. Even if the police officer who issued the ticket made it sound like a no-brainer, eligibility comes with conditions and possible consequences.
Criminal charges in NC don’t magically disappear. You should not assume you’re entitled to a dismissal.
If your parents are worried, it’s likely because they know and understand how court works. It can be a bit harsh. The truth is, the criminal justice system doesn’t always operate the way people think it should.
Rather than listen to the advice of friends who may have little or no experience with legal matters, talk to an experienced attorney. Bill Powers is an NBTA Board Certified Criminal Defense Lawyer with more than 26 years of practical courtroom experience helping people.
How Do I Get My Charges Expunged?
“We offer advice and guidance. Our job isn’t to judge you or give you a hard time. Give us a call, we are here to help. That’s why our telephone number is 704-342-HELP.”
– Bill Powers, Defense Attorney
Purging criminal charges from your record is not automatic. Getting the charges dismissed is the often the first step in the process, assuming that’s even possible.
Sometimes people think a dismissal is the same thing as an expunction or expungement. It’s not.
Even if the State (through the District Attorney’s Office) enters a ”VD,” which stands for Voluntary Dismissal, formal paperwork must be filed to begin the expunction process.
It too is not something that is always available. If you were convicted of a crime of violence in NC, the chances of an expunction are pretty slim (if not impossible).
If you have questions about the individual aspects of your case or whether you’re eligible for some sort of relief through an expunction, give our defense lawyers a call NOW.
You may also reach Bill Powers directly by email at: Bill@CarolinaAttorneys.com
For criminal charges in NC, we do not charge a consultation fee. That’s entirely free. That is not the case in family law matters including divorce, separation, and child support issues.