Can my son be charged with an MIP with no breathalyzer test in California? 10 Answers as of November 17, 2010

My 18 year old son in college was at a party. He did not drink and told the cops that and they did not give him a breathalyzer test. He was put in jail and charged with MIP. If he was not drinking and they did not give him a breathalyzer test can he still be charged with this? Is it better to fight this as he is being charged with something he did not do. He just happened to be there when the cops showed up.

Ask a Local Attorney. 100% Anonymous. Free Answers.

Free Case Evaluation by a Local Lawyer: Click here
Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg
Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg | Eric Sterkenburg
Yes it can be based on the cops judgment. He can fight it
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 11/17/2010
Law Office of Tracey S. Sang
Law Office of Tracey S. Sang | Tracey Sang
Having possession of alcohol does not mean the minor is under the influence. That is a different and more serious charge.

That said, simply being at a party certainly does not mean that you possessed alcohol. Your son should not plead guilty to something he did not do unless he is doing so to take advantage of an offer that is too good to pass up. Based on the facts you have stated, no prosecutor should charge him with the offense.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 11/16/2010
Law Offices of Juan Dotson
Law Offices of Juan Dotson | Juan Dotson
Yes, he can be. Possession of any contraband can be shared by two or more people.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 11/15/2010
Law Office of Geoffrey M. Yaryan
Law Office of Geoffrey M. Yaryan | Geoffrey M. Yaryan
If by MIP you mean minor in possession, then there must be some evidence of alcohol possession to prosecuted. If there is no evidence they have no case.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 11/15/2010
The English Law Firm
The English Law Firm | Robert English
They can certainly charge him with anything that they believe they have evidence for. However, the question is whether the charges will be able to be defended. If there are no facts to support the claim, then it would be defensible. The police may not necessarily write the report in the manner that your son recalls. They may state that they observed him with alcohol or that he admitted it. You won't know until charges are filed and there is an opportunity to review the police report.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 11/15/2010
    The Law Offices of Christopher J. McCann
    The Law Offices of Christopher J. McCann | Christopher J. McCann
    If by "MIP", you mean "Minor in Possession of Alcohol", then it makes no difference whether he drank it or not. The crime is "possession". Drinking it has nothing to do with it.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 11/15/2010
    Nelson & Lawless
    Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
    MIP does not require proof he was drinking or drunk, only in possession of alcohol.

    If you are arrested and charged with a crime, what can you do? Defend the charges. Go to court, enter a not guilty plea, arrange bail reduction or OR, set up and attend the court hearing[s] and trial date[s]. File evidence suppression or other motions as applicable. Raise all the available defenses with whatever admissible and credible witnesses, evidence and facts are available for legal arguments for motions, plea bargaining, or at trial. Go to trial if it cannot be resolved with motions or a plea bargain. There is no magic wand to wave and make it all disappear. If you do not know how to do these things, then hire an attorney that does, who will try to get a decent outcome or plea bargain for you. If serious about doing so, feel free to contact me. Ill be happy to help you use whatever defenses you may have. If you cannot afford private counsel, apply for the Public Defender.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 11/15/2010
    Dennis Roberts, a P.C.
    Dennis Roberts, a P.C. | Dennis Roberts
    I assume MIP is Minor in Possession. They do not need a breathalyzer test. They can just do field sobriety tests (touch your nose, say the alphabet backwards, ect) and then the cop testifies that he failed the tests and had trouble remaining upright. I hope this does not come as a big surprise but COPS LIE. But if he was charged with being a MIP what evidence do they have that he was in possession of anything. Is he a juvenile and will this be done in juvenile court? If so, he gets the Public Defender free. If in adult court let me know what county and I can recommend some good lawyers who are not just all about money but really try to help their clients.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 11/15/2010
    The Law Offices of Robert L. Driessen
    The Law Offices of Robert L. Driessen | Robert L. Driessen
    There is no requirement that he be tested if he drank alcohol as the charge is just a minor in possession of alcohol. Yes this is something that he should try to fight as pleading guilty will lead to a 1 year license suspension.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 11/15/2010
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    Yes he can be charged, but it is an extremely weak case. I recommend hiring an attorney to fight it all the way.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 11/15/2010
Click to View More Answers: