Legal Question in Criminal Law in New Mexico

Can someone be charged with a felony selling or giving alcohol to someone that is 18 yrs of age without good evidence if is was written in a statement while this person was under the influence

Asked on 7/27/12, 7:50 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Charles Aspinwall Charles S. Aspinwall, J.D., LLC

It is a felony to serve alcohol to a person under the age of 21 years in New Mexico. To prove this crime, it is necessary that the government prove (1) that alcohol was served by the person charged, and (2) that the person to whom it was served was under 21. A statement by someone that the person served is under 21 is not courtroom-quality evidence upon which a conviction could normally be based. A driver's license, birth certificate, or government-issued I.D. is such evidence. Criminal convictions cannot be based upon statements (hearsay), but must be supported by reliable substantive evidence.

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Answered on 7/28/12, 10:10 am

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