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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
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    Default Berkeley, California 25620(A) Possession of Open Container in Public

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: California.

    I was cited with what is checked as a Misdemeanor on the top of the Notice to Appear but listed as an Infraction in the actual code and section listing. I am unclear as to if this is a misdemeanor of an infraction?

    The full Code/Section with description is: 25620(a) B&P Possession of alcoholic beverage in public.

    I am a resident of New Mexico and would be unable to return for the listed court date. From reading about this, I know I will recieve information in the mail and have the option to pay a fine(bail) rather than appear in court.

    If I pay the fine(bail) will this impact any future employment options, as will I have to state that I have been convicted of a crime?

    Do I have the option of contesting this by mail?

    Thanks in advance for any insight.



    Story behind the citation. Following a Cal football game, I stepped off of a porch to grab a jacket from my girlfriend standing on the sidewalk a few feet away. After stepping off the porch I was approached by plain clothed police officers who asked for my ID to verify I was of drinking age. My ID was then handed of to another officer who feverishly began copying my information down for the wonderful citation I now have.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
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    Default Re: Berkeley, California 25620(A) Possession of Open Container in Public

    Quote Quoting California Code, B&P Sec. 25620.
    (a) Any person possessing any can, bottle, or otherreceptacle containing any alcoholic beverage that has been opened, ora seal broken, or the contents of which have been partially removed,in any city, county, or city and county owned park or other city,county, or city and county owned public place, or any recreation andpark district, or any regional park or open-space district shall beguilty of an infraction if the city, county, or city and county hasenacted an ordinance that prohibits the possession of thosecontainers in those areas or the consumption of alcoholic beveragesin those areas.

    (b) This section does not apply where the possession is withinpremises located in a park or other public place for which a licensehas been issued pursuant to this division.

    (c) This section does not apply when an individual is inpossession of an alcoholic beverage container for the purpose ofrecycling or other related activity.
    What's the ordinance?

    Given that the ticket says you're charged with a misdemeanor and I can't read it from where I'm sitting, I suggest you have it reviewed by a criminal defense lawyer.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
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    1

    Default Re: Berkeley, California 25620(A) Possession of Open Container in Public

    I seem to have encountered this same undercover cop production line on the same game day. Quite the revenue machine. So comforting knowing undercover cops are busy feverishly writing up minor infractions, no?

    By the way, it should be marked as an infraction (I circled, not M). Mine was, and 25620(A) states pretty clearly that it's an infraction.

    Quote Quoting Mr. Knowitall
    View Post
    What's the ordinance?
    They don't cite one on the ticket.

    Quote Quoting anastn
    View Post
    Do I have the option of contesting this by mail?
    Read the back of the ticket. It has some info on how to contest by mail. It does say "traffic infractions" there, but it looks like the traffic division handles the minor crimes as well. Mine also has the "Traffic" box at the top checked, although "Nontraffic" would seem much more fitting. You can try calling first to check (510) 269-7673
    Let us know how it goes if you do decide to contest by mail.

    Quote Quoting anastn
    View Post
    If I pay the fine(bail) will this impact any future employment options, as will I have to state that I have been convicted of a crime?
    This is my main concern as well. Any comments?

    I'll probably be contesting this one. Any tips for a pro se defense?

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