Connecticut Providing Alcohol To Minors Lawyer
The carefree days of throwing alcohol and keg parties at your house while your parents are away on vacation are long gone. Not only is it Risky Business (as the movie suggested), but it’s also criminal business according to Stamford, Darien and Greenwich police and prosecutors who are now enforcing a newly enacted law which now makes it a felony to provide alcohol to anyone under 21.
As a result, we are seeing more arrests in New Canaan, Darien and Greenwich for C.G.S. 30-86 Distribution and Provision of Alcohol to Minors. They are even arresting teenagers who are raiding their parents’ liquor cabinets, throwing parties, and supplying beer and liquor to friends. And if the parents are home—even upstairs sleeping and unaware of the alcohol consumption going on in the basement—we have seen parents get arrested for 30-86 Providing Alcohol to Minors because police claim they should have known that kids were drinking in their home. So if you or your child are arrested for 30-86 Distributing or Delivery of Alcohol to a Minor in Darien, New Canaan, Wilton or Greenwich, you should call a top Stamford and Norwalk criminal lawyer right away to understand the seriousness of the charges brought against you and how to get them dismissed or disposed of as quickly as possible.
Definition and Penalties for Illegally Providing Alcohol to Minor Charges
The law for CGS 30-86 Providing Alcohol to Minors is simply stated and does not require any special intent. According to the specific language of CGS 30-86(b)(2), if you provide, deliver, sell, or give alcohol to an individual under the age of 21 years old, then you will be arrested in Darien, New Canaan, Greenwich or anywhere else in Connecticut for violating C.G.S. 30-86 Providing and Delivering Alcohol to a Minor. This crime has recently been re-classified by Connecticut lawmakers as a newly created “Class E” felony, carrying a maximum jail sentence of 18 months in prison, $1500 fine, and probation.
The best Darien and Greenwich criminal lawyers often see high school students charged with this crime, who are often shocked to learn that this charge is a felony. It is shocking because at first a ticket for this crime seems like no big deal…Darien, Greenwich and New Canaan police officers have the discretion to issue this charge in the form of a summons ticket and because of the age of the child, they choose not to have them booked, photographed, fingerprinted and processed at the local police station. But don’t be fooled by not being booked or handcuffed in Greenwich and Darien for 30-86 Illegal Provision of Alcohol case. These are felony charges that can affect your child’s future if not handled properly. So if you are arrested for 30-86 Providing Alcohol to Minors in Darien or Greenwich, be sure to talk to a top Stamford or Norwalk criminal lawyer to find out how the local courts handle these types of arrests.
What To Do When Police Come To Your Door Investigating an Underage Drinking Party
Always remember that if the Darien, Greenwich or New Canaan police ask you if they can enter your home, you always have the right to say no. Police can only come into your home without permission in two sets of circumstances: (1) they have in their hands a search warrant signed by a judge which they must show you before entering your home, or (2) they inform you they have probable cause to believe someone’s life is in danger, or a crime is being committed, inside your home.
So if the Darien or Greenwich police are asking you to enter your home, it probably means they neither have a warrant in hand nor have probable cause to enter. The exchange at your front door may be an uncomfortable conversation and the police may pressure or threaten you. But understand this: if they are asking you to come in, then you have the opportunity to politely say no and shut the door on them. The better course is to tell them you are going to call and consult with a top Darien or New Canaan criminal lawyer prior to making a decision to let them into your home. Do not be intimidated by their threats. Most police officers are trained and skilled in high level and high-pressure interrogation and intimidation tactics to get you to consent to requests such as letting them search your home. Stand your ground and call a top Greenwich or Darien Connecticut criminal lawyer right away.
Can Parents Get Arrested for this Felony Even If They Didn’t Know About the Party?
Yes, especially because Darien, Greenwich and New Canaan police officers will often hold parents responsible for failing to properly supervise their children. Here’s the scenario some of the best Greenwich criminal lawyers have seen in recent years where parents are getting arrested for 30-86 Illegally Providing or Delivering Alcohol to Minors: parents who allow their teenagers to drink in the basements, party rooms, guest houses, pool houses, backyards and garages of their homes, unsupervised, while the parents are upstairs sleeping. It is not acceptable to take the car keys of all the party guests. And it does not matter if the parents of the party guests have given you permission.
Parents are frustrated with this law. It is a double-edged sword. The top Stamford and Greenwich juvenile lawyers are asked all the time whether it is safer for parents to monitor a drinking party than have their children run around town drinking in an uncontrolled environment? Unfortunately, Greenwich and Darien police and prosecutors see it this way: as much as the party hosting parents will try to ensure a safe drinking environment, there always seems to be one rogue partygoer who slips out, calls a cab, grabs a ride, and then will get behind a steering wheel or engage in a violent fistfight later in the evening. This is where the zero tolerance comes from. And as a result, Connecticut anti-underage drinking felony laws like 30-86 Providing Alcohol to Minors have been enacted and are being aggressively enforced in Greenwich, New Canaan, Darien and Wilton.
If My Child is Arrested for 30-86 Providing Alcohol to Minors, Will it Be Adjudicated in Adult or Juvenile Court?
Depends on your child’s age. If your child is 17 years old or younger and is arrested for Felony Providing / Distributing / Delivering Alcohol to a Minor in Stamford, Greenwich, Darien, New Canaan, Westport or Wilton, then your child will be prosecuted as a Juvenile and issued a summons to appear in either Stamford or Bridgeport Juvenile Court. Note that even as a juvenile, you can be arrested, handcuffed, booked, fingerprinted and photographed. However, as top Stamford Juvenile criminal lawyers have observed, the juvenile process is much more advantageous because it is confidential, statutorily sealed, and not available to the public or newspapers. This means a juvenile arrest cannot come up on any background check or show up on the internet.
However, if your child is over the age of 17 and is arrested in Darien or New Canaan for 30-86 Providing / Delivering Alcohol to a Minor, then your child will be prosecuted as an adult offender. This means that you will be booked, photographed and fingerprinted, and your arrest will be released to the local online and print media as part of their weekly arrest reports. It is therefore critical to work with a top Stamford and Darien criminal lawyer to fight your child’s CGS 30-86 Alcohol Distribution arrest so that the arrest gets completely dismissed and erased from any future background check by a graduate school or potential employer. Further, in addition to keeping your criminal record clean, you must also get this adult arrest off the internet. The fact that your 30-86 arrest in Stamford, Darien or Greenwich was in adult court and was public record makes scrubbing the internet of your arrest record even more critical. The Mark Sherman Law firm offers internet scrubbing services that are discussed below.
Fighting CGS 30-86 Illegally Delivering / Proving Alcohol to Minor Arrests
As any of the best criminal lawyers in Stamford, New Canaan, and Darien will agree, the most important aspect of any Connecticut 30-86 arrest for providing or distributing alcohol to minors is crafting and developing your defense strategy with your top Darien or New Canaan criminal lawyer and attorney. Too often these cases arise from scenarios where police have charged the wrong person. Many questions need to be investigated and answered: Who brought the alcohol to the party? Did the homeowners and parents have any direct knowledge that there was alcohol in the home or a party was even taking place that night? Who paid for the alcohol? Which liquor store sold the alcohol to the underage purchaser? Did the police legally enter the home? With or without a search warrant?
The Mark Sherman Law team of criminal defense lawyers will sit with you and your family and discuss the details of the allegations made against you. We will then compare the usually overblown and exaggerated accusations in the police reports to what really happened by taking down a detailed account of your side of the story. We will gather any witness statements you feel are appropriate, and if necessary, will request the Connecticut Superior Court to order the preservation of video surveillance evidence from cameras belonging to the homeowner, neighbors, police cruisers, police booking station, and liquor stores. We feel it is critical to be as aggressive as possible from the moment we get involved in a criminal case, even if it means ruffling prosecutorial feather and engaging a private investigator to knock on doors. You or your child’s right to a fair disposition of the case—by having all the available information and evidence in front of us—is our number one priority.
Don’t You Have the Right to Serve Alcohol to Whomever You Want in the Privacy of Your Own Home?
Absolutely not. This question is frequently asked to the best Connecticut criminal lawyers and attorneys who defend homeowners and teenagers against arrests in Darien, Greenwich and Wilton for 30-86 Delivering / Providing Alcohol to Minors. Figure it this way—you’re not allowed to commit other crimes in your house like murder, drug use, or child pornography, so what makes providing alcohol to minors any different? There is a little wiggle room when it comes to religious ceremonies, but that’s not what we’re talking about here. The law is meant to prohibit and forbid hosting teenage and underage alcohol drinking parties. No matter how safe Darien, Stamford or Greenwich parents may want to make an underage drinking party—it’s still a felony for which you can receive a maximum 18-month jail sentence.
What’s the Difference between a 30-86 Provision and Delivery of Alcohol to a Minor Arrest and a 30-89 Minor in Possession of Alcohol Charge and this?
A Minor in Possession of Alcohol Ticket under Connecticut General Statutes § 30-89. is not a crime. Rather, it is an infraction that carries a maximum fine of $500 for each violation. And if you are under 21 and plead guilty by mail or in person to a CGS 30-89 charge, then your Connecticut driver’s license will be suspended for 30 days in most cases, and 60 days if alcohol was discovered in your motor vehicle. Further, as a result of these suspensions, additional DMV license restoration fees apply and your auto insurance carrier may increase your annual premiums when it reviews your renewal applications and discovers this suspension. To learn more about how the Mark Sherman Law Firm can assist you in fighting your Stamford, New Canaan and Greenwich Connecticut 30-89 Possession of Alcohol by a Minor tickets, click here.
Notwithstanding the financial penalties and DMV consequences, these 30-89 tickets for Possession of Alcohol by a Minor pale in comparison to a CGS 30-86 felony charge for providing or delivering alcohol to a minor. So be sure you understand which charge you are facing before pleading guilty. The consequences can be a game-changer for your career and future.
Drinking Party Tiplines in Darien and other Connecticut Towns
Some Connecticut towns like Darien Connecticut are getting very aggressive against underage drinking parties. The Darien Police Department has even established a drinking party “tipline” for parents, neighbors, taxi cab drivers, and the rest of the community to call whenever they suspect an underage keg or drinking party is underway in town. There’s no question the town’s intention is well-placed: they want to protect their children, roads, and the community as a whole from drunk driving and the other perils of underage drinking. The problem, however, is that instead of just breaking up the party and having parents pick up their kids at the police station, the Darien Police will sometimes arrest Darien teenagers for CGS 30-86 Providing or Delivering Alcohol to Minor felony charges. What these police officers fail to appreciate is that these same teenagers—who many times do not even bring the alcohol to the house or provide it to the partygoers—now have Connecticut felony charges hanging over their heads during the criminal court process while they are simultaneously trying to get into college or get internships at companies that will run background checks on them. This begs the question: are these arrests for CGS 30-86 Providing Alcohol to Minors in Stamford, Greenwich, Darien and New Canaan really necessary? The Mark Sherman Law Firm believes these charges are often unnecessary and will work quickly to dispose of your felony charge.
Taxi Cab Confessions – Beware of Taxi Driver Who Notify Police of Underage Drinking Parties
Top Stamford and Darien criminal lawyers have recently noticed one other way teenagers are getting arrested for CGS 30-86 Providing Alcohol – taxi cab drivers who are picking up teenage drinkers in Darien, Greenwich and New Canaan are giving partygoers safe and sober rides home, and at the same time calling in the party to the police! Is there any worse way to discourage kids from calling for a safe ride home? Call a cab and get yourself or your friends arrested? Thus, the best course of conduct for a safe, sober, and confidential ride home are the SafeRides programs in Darien and Greenwich. Be sure to click these links for SafeRides contact information.
Getting 30-86 Providing Alcohol to Minor Felony Charges Off Your Record
Once your top Darien or Greenwich criminal lawyer attorney gets your felony arrest for 30-86 Providing Alcohol to Minor dismissed in either Stamford or Norwalk Superior Court, the next issue you need to deal with is removing any mention of your arrest from the internet. We call this “scrubbing the internet” clean of all online reports of your Darien or Greenwich arrest for 30-86 Providing Alcohol to Minors. The Mark Sherman Law Firm stands above and apart from all of its competitors in leading the charge against online publishers in pressuring them to take down all online references to a dismissed and erased case under Connecticut’s Erasure Statute, C.G.S. § 54-142a. Under this statute, if your Connecticut arrest has been dismissed and erased, then the law allows you to swear under oath that you have never been arrested. The libel and slander lawyers at Mark Sherman Law are not afraid to sue online news outlets to take down your arrest reports—whether these websites are run by large multinational corporations or are a local mom-and-pop community website. See the New York Times coverage of Mark Sherman Law’s efforts to battle national media companies on this very issue.
Civil Liability and Exposure for Homeowners and Parents
Finally, many of the best Stamford criminal lawyers will remind their clients who get into legal trouble for hosting underage drinking parties that they or their parents can be civilly liable for any damages that may be caused by a partygoer who causes injury to a third party or causes other property damage. This problem unfortunately arises all too often in drunk driving tragedies where people are seriously injured or killed after a teenager leaves an underage drinking party. Other lawsuits we have seen involve injuries from brawls, fights, rapes and other sexual assaults. The hosts of the party often have homeowners and umbrella insurance policies that aggressive Connecticut plaintiff’s lawyers and personal injury attorneys will seek to tap for millions of dollars of alleged damages, especially during the time when the homeowners or party hosts are most vulnerable—when they are on their heals facing Connecticut 30-86 criminal charges for illegally providing alcohol to minors. This is when you need to consult a top Stamford, Darien or Greenwich criminal lawyer attorney to assist you through both the criminal and civil court processes. There are many overlapping concerns that a criminal lawyer can balance in an effort to protect your assets, as well as your freedom.
Contact an Experienced 30-86 Providing Alcohol to Minors Criminal Attorney Today
With the introduction of a new classification of felony charge – the Class E Felony – the stakes could not be higher for arrests in Greenwich, Darien, New Canaan and Wilton for CGS 30-86 Illegal Provision and Delivery of Alcohol to Minors. Especially when Darien, New Canaan and Greenwich police are arresting college-bound teenagers—and in some cases, their hard-working parents—for this felony charge. With a felony arrest for this 30-86 charge hanging over your head while your case is pending, it thus becomes absolutely critical that your CGS 30-86 Connecticut Providing / Delivering Alcohol to Minors is handled properly, aggressively and expeditiously. So give a Mark Sherman Law criminal attorney a call today to help you dispose of your Darien, New Canaan or Greenwich arrest for CGS 30-86 Providing Alcohol to Minors today. Our rates are competitive, and our team of attorneys can handle all aspects of your case, assist you in preparing an aggressive defense, and will not relent until we get you the best result we possibly can. Call us today at (203) 358-4700 to schedule a consultation.