Arlington Student Defense Lawyer
All colleges, universities, and other educational institutions have rules and regulations provided by the school’s code of conduct students must abide by. However, as young adults in college, students sometimes make errors in judgment that could land them in trouble with the law and the university. The consequences of those errors could be grave and detrimental to their future. If you or your child is facing criminal charges, contacting an Arlington student defense lawyer may be in your best interests.
Aside from the penalties that college students could receive as a result of a criminal conviction, an arrest or charge could prompt student disciplinary proceedings by a college or university. A permanent mark of any misconduct on a school record could also be devastating to future goals. A practiced defense lawyer could advocate on your behalf and work toward a more positive resolution of both the criminal and disciplinary proceedings.
Common Charges for College Students
College students are subject to the same laws as other adults. This means that they may be arrested for any criminal offense. However, offenses related to unlawful alcohol use are some of the most commonly broken by students. This is particularly the case for those under the age of 21. Some of the common charges that college students encounter include:
- Driving under the influence (DUI) and Driving while intoxicated/impaired (DWI)
- Public intoxication
- Possession of an alcoholic beverage in a motor vehicle
- Possession of a fake form of identification
Other common offenses that college students face include possession of marijuana or other controlled substances, assault, shoplifting, and disorderly conduct. Although many of these criminal offenses are relatively minor, they may have serious consequences and could trigger student disciplinary proceedings.
Criminal Penalties for Alcohol-Related Offenses in Arlington
The penalties college students may face for alcohol-related offenses could have tremendous ramifications. Under Tex. Alcohol. Bev. Code § 106.04 – 106.05, it is unlawful for anyone under the age of 21 to possess or consume alcohol. Students below the age of 21 are subject to DUI charges if they have even a trace amount of alcohol in their systems while driving regardless of whether they are showing any signs of impairment. Students over the age of 21 are subject to DWI charges in Texas when they have a BAC above 0.08 percent.
Even a first violation of some alcohol-related offenses may result in the following penalties:
- Community service hours
- Mandatory alcohol education course
- License suspension
In the case of a second or subsequent offense, the penalties listed above often increase, and jail time becomes a possibility.
Repercussions for Violating Student Conduct Codes
All colleges and universities are required to have an established code of conduct for students though they may vary from one school to the next. Even if students are arrested but never charged with a crime, or the charges are filed but are later dismissed, the arrest or filing of charges could be sufficient for the institution to seek disciplinary action.
Proceedings concerning violations of student conduct codes are much different than criminal court proceedings. Unlike a criminal court, there is no presumption of innocence, right to counsel, or rules of evidence. Students bear the burden of proving they did not violate the conduct code.
If students violated the conduct code, they could be placed on probation, lose privileges, be suspended, and even face expulsion in some cases. The outcome of a student disciplinary proceeding could have a huge impact on any future educational and professional endeavors. Having a legal representative who is familiar with an institution’s laws, conduct codes, and other student disciplinary proceedings may be essential for a positive outcome.
Meet with an Arlington Student Defense Attorney Today
Having a derogatory mark on your criminal and school record could make getting internships, graduate school admissions, jobs, housing, and professional licenses much more difficult. An Arlington student defense lawyer may be able to help you through this difficult time in your life and achieve a positive resolution.
Competition among college graduates is high, and a criminal conviction in your background could be enough to adversely affect your future. Avoid or minimize these repercussions by seeking legal advice today.