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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    15

    Thumbs down Identity Theft For Using A Fake ID

    My little brother, who is 17, was recently caught drinking with some of his friends. He was charged with an misdemeanor MIP. However, the police found out that he used my boyfriend's old ID to purchase beer at a gas station, and have video of him at the store doing so. My boyfriend lost the id sometime last year and I recently found it under the couch at my parents house. I left the ID on the counter, which is I think where my brother found it. After talking to my boyfriend, who said that he didn't know my brother was using the ID that night, the cop sent my brother an amended citation in the mail charging him with felony identity theft. He is also being charged with using a fake id to purchase alcohol, which is a misdemeanor. My parents already have retained a lawyer for him who is pretty sure that the felony charge will not hold up in court. I believe it is written as a 530? or something similar to that.

    I was wondering if anyone had experience with something like this before and what possible outcomes might be? I am unsure of why they are charging him with felony identity theft in a situation like this, it seems like the misdemeanor for using the id would be sufficient enough. And I thought that the victim of the supposed identity theft, which is my boyfriend, would have to agree to press charges for this to go forward?

    Also, the cop came to my parents house the night it happened and my little brother came outside (He had left the party he was at as soon as the cops came, but his "friend" ratted him out). Before he began talking to the officer, my brother asked if he could go inside and get my dad, but the cop told him he needed to answer some questions first. Isn't it illegal to interrogate a minor without his parents presence?

    This is in Butte County, Northern California. My brother has no prior offenses of any kind. Any advice would be appreciated!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    2,652

    Default Re: Identity Theft For Using A Fake ID

    Your brother did not use a fake ID, it was someone elses real ID. It is a crime to use someone elses personal identifying information without their authorization.

    530.5. (a) Every person who willfully obtains personal identifying
    information, as defined in subdivision (b) of Section 530.55, of
    another person, and uses that information for any unlawful purpose,
    including to obtain, or attempt to obtain, credit, goods, services,
    real property, or medical information without the consent of that
    person, is guilty of a public offense, and upon conviction therefor,
    shall be punished by a fine, by imprisonment in a county jail not to
    exceed one year, or by both a fine and imprisonment, or by
    imprisonment in the state prison.
    The victim does not have to press charges for the state to pursue it.

    The police can question a minor without the parents being present.

    Your parents have hired a lawyer, that is the advice that should be listened to.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Identity Theft For Using A Fake ID

    So what would the penalities be for this kind of thing? Also, my brother turns 18 in April. If it doesn't go to court until after his birthday, will he be tried as an adult? I was under the impression that if a minor was asking for his parents, it was kind of the same as asking for a lawyer...Is there any chance the judge will reduce it to a misdemeanor? Like I said, my brother has no prior offenses and charging him with a felony for this one stupid mistake seems REALLY harsh.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    2,006

    Default Re: Identity Theft For Using A Fake ID

    I commend you for asking questions when you don't know however to ask us what possible outcomes could be would be impossible, we can only tell you what he could get charged with based on the laws that were broken. Just as pointed out by Happy above.

    You also need to look at it from the parents point of view...not YOUR parents but the other parents of the other kids involved. Cops come, catch them drinking, call their parents, give them tickets. The question EVERY single adult is going to ask is "where did you get it?" Which is going to include the police. All it takes is one parent to insist on finding out who supplied it to "their" child and the guilty party is done. And frankly, why shouldn't they? I know it sucks cuz it's your brother here but would you take the fall for someone else? I would hope not.

    My guess here is that the police got aggrevated trying to get to the truth and wrote out a ticket big enough to get something to stick, hence the felony charge. Honestly, there could have been a whole bunch of amendments here including contributing. What he did was serious. Most victims of identify theft find out about it long after the damage is done.

    The police questioned your brother which is different from interrrogation which would have required the reading of miranda, questioning does not.

    Your brothers lawyer who is familiar with the DA and the judges in the area and your brothers entire case would be the best person to know what he thinks will stick or not, much more than anyone here would be.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    2,006

    Default Re: Identity Theft For Using A Fake ID

    On the ticket does it say that he has to report to juvenile court? It should specifically say and your parents would have to also be present, if not, he's looking at regular court.
    He age is related to the age at the time the crime was committed. I just don't know if NC considers this an adult crime, but the ticket should say.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
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    2,652

    Default Re: Identity Theft For Using A Fake ID

    Northern California


    Do you want to borrow my reading glasses?

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    15

    Default Re: Identity Theft For Using A Fake ID

    I appreciate everyone's help, no one in my family has ever really been in trouble like this before so its hard for me not to want to speculate. I actually don't think he's been charged yet... the paperwork hadn't reached the DA's office as of yesterday and all he has is the citation. I know no one here probably condones lying but what if i were to say that I had given him the id and my bf was aware that it was in his posession? we could get misdemeanors for contributing right? At this point I almost just want to try and take the fall for him if it would get rid of this felony thing. Because he is a minor, if he is convicted before he is 18, would the felony be expunged from his record?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Ohio
    Posts
    2,006

    Default Re: Identity Theft For Using A Fake ID

    Quote Quoting Happy Trails
    View Post
    Northern California


    Do you want to borrow my reading glasses?
    Please, because if I borrow them then I don't need me own right? lol

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    California
    Posts
    20,377

    Default Re: Identity Theft For Using A Fake ID

    Quote Quoting nhyzzz
    View Post
    I was wondering if anyone had experience with something like this before and what possible outcomes might be?
    Anything is possible. But, probation and hefty fines are the most likely results.

    I am unsure of why they are charging him with felony identity theft in a situation like this, it seems like the misdemeanor for using the id would be sufficient enough.
    It is charged as a felony but often plead down to a misdemeanor in a plea deal.

    And I thought that the victim of the supposed identity theft, which is my boyfriend, would have to agree to press charges for this to go forward?
    Nope.

    The state can pursue the charges. Besides, your boyfriend is not the victim - the state is.

    Before he began talking to the officer, my brother asked if he could go inside and get my dad, but the cop told him he needed to answer some questions first. Isn't it illegal to interrogate a minor without his parents presence?
    No, it's NOT illegal to talk to kids without their parents.

    - carl
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    California
    Posts
    20,377

    Default Re: Identity Theft For Using A Fake ID

    Quote Quoting nhyzzz
    View Post
    Because he is a minor, if he is convicted before he is 18, would the felony be expunged from his record?
    No.

    He can petition to have his record sealed when he is done with probation, but it is not "expunged".

    - Carl
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

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