Driving Under the Influence or DUI doesn’t just happen to people who are over the legal drinking age. It is possible for young drivers under the age of 21 to be charged with and convicted of DUI. If you or your child is facing a DUI under 21 in or around the Jackson Metro Area, your top priority needs to be speaking with a proven criminal defense attorney. Young people have their whole lives ahead of them. Whether they’re heading off to college, a technical program or already working in their chosen field, a DUI can totally disrupt their immediate and long-term future. Getting the charge thrown out will be your attorney’s main objective, because a DUI can seriously damage education and career prospects for young people who may or may not have made one small mistake.Under 21 DUI in Mississippi
In Mississippi, if you are under the age of 21, a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .02 percent or more, you can be charged with driving under the influence. Because drivers under the age of 21 are not allowed to legally consume alcohol, they DUI laws are stricter. For drivers who are legally allowed to drink, the standard .08 percent BAC is used to determine sobriety behind the wheel. This means that very little alcohol can cause a young driver to be charged with DUI. There is little to no room for error where drivers under the age of 21 are involved.Teen Drivers and Alcohol and/or Drugs Sobriety Checkpoints
If your teen was stopped and arrested at an alcohol or drug sobriety checkpoint, you need to contact a skilled criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. Whether there was a sobriety test involved or you refused, you need to speak with a lawyer. Minors that refuse the breath test are typically treated like first-time DUI offenders.First-Time DUI Youth Offenders
If this is your first DUI and you’re under 21, you’re likely going to be facing fines, victim impact programs, alcohol safety education programs and a suspension of your license. If convicted, probably one of the worst things is that this will essentially go on your so-called ‘permanent record.’ Potential employers, colleges, technical schools, universities, apartment complexes, creditors and housing developments will all be able to pre-judge you based upon one mistake you made before you even turned 21. With a bright future ahead, don’t let a DUI slow you down. If your or a loved one has been arrested and charged with driving under the influence, you need a skilled and proven criminal defense attorney on your side.Exercise Your Right to Remain Silent
No matter what age you are, if you have been arrested and charged with driving under the influence, you need to exercise your right to remain silent. Don’t fall into the trap of wanting to talk to investigators in an effort to look ‘less guilty.’ You don’t have to talk or share any information with law enforcement officers until your lawyer arrives. Politely ask for your attorney and wait for him or her to show up. Police officers are counting on your age and lack of experience to help them build a case, so wait until your lawyer arrives and you two can discuss a plan for your defense.Implications of an Early DUI
Like with any kind of criminal misdemeanor or felony conviction, the implications of a DUI early on in one’s adult’s life can lead to a variety of issues down the road. One mistake can impact your ability to rent an apartment, get a job or borrow money. Don’t let a DUI conviction impact your future. Not only can employers judge you based on your past experiences, anybody that can pull a background check will be able to see that you have a criminal record. For teens and young adults who are first time offenders in the criminal justice system, this can be incredibly damaging.When to Call a Criminal Defense Attorney
One small mistake shouldn’t determine the rest of a person’s life. Getting a DUI so young can me incredibly damaging your child’s future. An early DUI can impact your child’s ability to get an education and a career. Nobody needs additional obstacles when it’s already tough enough to get your adult life started and on the right track. Just because you or your child has been charged with driving under the influence, that doesn’t automatically mean there’s going to be a conviction. You do have options. If you or your child is facing a DUI charge in Jackson or any of the surrounding communities, contact the skilled legal team at Coxwell & Associates, PLLC at (877) 231-1600 today for an immediate case consultation.