Today, my cousin, myself, and one of my friends were charged with underage consumption of an alcoholic beverage in a state park. A state ranger was on a drive through and saw the beer on the table (Mike's Hard Lemonade). We were very cooperative in giving correct information ect. He didn't watch us consume it nor did he do any field sobriety tests. I had consumed 2 and was waiting for the short buzz to wear off before I drove us home (the park had 4 hours until close). My cousin will only be in North Carolina for 2 more weeks before she returns to California, therefore she is missing the court date. We were advised by the ranger to call the District Attorneys office tomorrow about our situation. It's $25 for the underage drinking but $152 for the court costs. Is there any advice I could have about getting the charges on both my cousin and myself completely dropped, or at least reduced? (I figured Drunk Driving & DUI was closest to this situation)
1 Answer from Attorneys
If none of you have a criminal record, you may be eligible for the first time offender's program. It will require you to go to some substance abuse classes and write one page papers. There also is a fine to pay to do the program. However, after the program, the charge is removed from your record. This way, you will still have a clean record, which is important when applying to college and/or a job.
Your cousin who lives in CA should get an attorney who is able to re-schedule the court date, so that he can attend it before he leaves.
All of you should get an attorney to make sure these charges have no lasting effect.