Posts Tagged ‘License Suspension Underage Drinking Berks County’

Spotlight Issue: Kutztown University student found “not guilty” of underage drinking charge

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2018

While underage drinking may not seem like a decision that will have long term consequences, many Berks County college students find out the hard way that the penalties can be stiff. While it is most commonly referred to as the underage drinking law, the law in Pennsylvania penalizes more than just the consumption of alcohol by a person under the age of 21. In Pennsylvania it is illegal for a person under the age of 21 to attempt to purchase as well as to purchase, consume, possess or knowingly and intentionally transport liquor or malt or brewed beverages. The punishment for violating the underage drinking law is a fine and a driver’s license suspension. For a first offense underage drinking charge in Berks County, a fine of up to $500 is permitted and a 90 day license suspension is required. A second conviction for underage drinking involves a penalty of a fine not to exceed $1,000 and a 1 year license suspension. Third and subsequent offenses subject the defendant to a fine of up to $1,000 and a 2 year license suspension.

Attorney Dan Nevins recently represented a Kutztown University student charged with violating the underage drinking law. This client was charged for being the driver of a car which contained passengers over the age of 21 who were transporting a keg. There was also a bottle of liquor in the car that the client was accused of possessing. After consultation with Attorney Nevins, this client decided to proceed to a hearing in front of the Magisterial District Judge and Attorney Nevins convinced the Court that the client was not guilty of the charges. Because this Kutztown University client had previously been convicted of violating the underage drinking law, a finding of guilt would have resulted in a $1,000 fine and a 1 year driver’s license suspension. Thanks to the efforts of Attorney Nevins, our client walked away without any penalty.

If you’re a Kutztown University student who has been charged with violating the underage drinking law, contact our experienced Berks County criminal defense attorneys to discuss your options. Call us at 610-372-5128 or email at info@enmlaw.com.

Client Not Guilty in Underage Drinking Case

Wednesday, February 13th, 2013

Attorney Ryan W. McAllister recently represented a young college student who was charged with underage drinking. Our client was a student at a local Berks County college, and she was attending a party with other students when the party got “busted”. A lot of local police officers showed up, and virtually all the students present were given breathalyzer tests, and many of the students were given citations for underage drinking under 18 Pa.C.S.A. 6308.

Although the citation itself may not seem terribly serious at first, many young people, especially college students, are afraid of having a conviction for this type of offense on their “record”. Additionally, a conviction for underage drinking will result in PennDOT suspending the defendant’s license for a period of at least 90 days. Finally, the amount of fines and court costs involved can quickly approach $500.00.

For these reasons, Attorney McAllister and his client decided they would “fight” the charge at a summary trial before the local Berks County Magisterial District Judge. On the day of the hearing, the police officer who issued the citation took the witness stand and attempted to testify about the incident as it related to our client. Attorney McAllister cross-examined the officer, and the defendant even testified when it was time for the defense to present their case. At the close of evidence, Attorney McAllister made a convincing closing argument to the District Judge, who subsequently found our client “not guilty” of the underage drinking charge.

The next day, Attorney McAllister began the process of filing an expungement to get this any trace of this information off of our client’s record.

Needless to say, our client was extremely happy with the outcome. She would not receive any fines or court costs as a penalty, and she would not receive any suspension of her license. Most importantly, though, our client would not have a record of a conviction for this offense. If you, your child, or someone you know is charged with 18 Pa.C.S.A. 6308 (underage drinking) in Reading, PA, or Berks County, PA, please contact our law firm right away at 610-372-5128. It could mean the difference between a conviction and a not guilty verdict.