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  1. #1

    Default What is the Penalty for Possession of Alcohol by a Minor

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: North Carolina

    My son was cited for possession of malt beverage G.S. 18B-302 (B)(1) in Cabarrus County, NC. He is 16 years old, and this is his first offense. He is an excellent student with 90% average, part time job, and does volunteer work. He did not consume the beer (nor did he leave the area), and his friend admitted to bringing it. All persons present were cited only for possession.

    What kind of sentence is he looking at? Should we retain legal council? Can he get a change of venue to Teen Court? One of the officers mentioned Teen Court, but we are not sure what it is. He mad a VERY stupid mistake by not leaving the area, but we are trying to get through this with as little damage to his bright future as possible.

    Any advice is welcome.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: What is the Penalty for Possession of Alcohol by a Minor

    A violation of NCGS 18B-302(b)(1) by a 19 or 20 year old is a Class 3 misdemeanor, punishable by up to 1-20 days in jail, a fine up to $200 and probation. See NCGS 18B-302(i); 15A-1340.23; 15A-1343. For younger teens it appears to default to a Class 1 misdemeanor. NCGS 18B‑102(b). A Class 1 misdemeanor carries a maximum penalty of 120 days in jail and a discretionary fine.

    If the underage person is convicted of having engaged in the act of purchasing or attempting to purchase an alcoholic beverage, his driver’s license will be revoked. GS 18B-302(g)(3).

    Presumably he's charged in juvenile court, where the court will look at his home, family, school and community life, as well as his past encounters with law enforcement, when fashioning a consequence. Nobody is going to discourage you from consulting a lawyer.

  3. #3

    Default Re: What is the Penalty for Possession of Alcohol by a Minor

    Thank you Mr. Knowitall,

    As time goes on, and the severity of this sinks in I am wondering if we can get the charges dismissed. My son didn't purchase the alcohol, nor did he bring it to the woods. The person who did, admitted it to the police officers. That person also admitted that he was the only one who drank any alcohol, and my son, and the other boy present didn't.

    Since my son didn't supply, or drink the beer, can he still be guilty of "possession"?

    I guess it's time to call a lawyer

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