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Minor in possession offenses: How to defend against them

Whether we like it or not, it's common for children to get their hands on alcoholic beverages and drink them. Whether the child is 10 years old or 17 years old, when a minor is in possession of alcohol, it's a crime -- and state governments like Georgia do everything they can to prevent it from happening.

Most states -- Georgia included -- have minor in possession laws designed to police and prevent the consumption of alcohol by minors. These laws were designed with the following purposes in mind:

  • To teach minors about the dangers of alcohol consumption, particularly the dangers associated with drinking and driving
  • To help minors who have become chemically dependent on alcohol
  • To get minors involved in beneficial community service activities

Although minor in possession laws were largely created to prevent and police drinking and driving by minors, driving is not a requirement for a minor in possession offense. For example, an underaged person who is simply holding an alcoholic beverage could face minor in possession charges and be convicted of the offense.

The most severe consequence of a minor in possession conviction is the potential loss of driving privileges for a minor. However, some defense options might be available depending on the circumstances. These include:

  • The container held by the minor did not actually contain alcohol and the minor can prove it
  • The alcohol was being consumed as a part of a religious service

Was your son or daughter accused of a minor in possession offense? You might be able to successfully defend against the charges with a well-thought-out criminal defense strategy. Make sure you understand the array of defense options available and proceed with your criminal defense accordingly.

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