When statistics show that over 3 million students ages 18-24 have driven drunk, it is not surprising that many college students across the country are arrested every year for DUI. In many states there is a zero tolerance policy for underage drinking and driving. This means that even if your state law has a breath alcohol limit of .10 or .08 this does not apply to those under 21. In Miami, Florida, for example, a student who is under the age of 21 and stopped for DUI it does not matter what the alcohol level is – any amount of alcohol (even 1 beer) means a DUI.
A DUI for anyone, especially a college student, is a serious crime. Even though, in most states a first DUI is only a misdemeanor charge, the ramifications and penalties can last a lifetime.
Therefore, it is imperative that a college student who is facing a DUI charge hire an attorney with a lot of DUI experience. Often times the student or parents believe that the student made a mistake and should just plead guilty and pay for it. This attitude could have an adverse effect on the student even many, many years later. I recommend that even if the student feels they were intoxicated that they should have an attorney to review the case to see if there are any problems or defects which may permit a reduction in the charges or a complete dismissal. Considering the astronomical costs of a college education today the cost of hiring an attorney to defend a college student is a mere drop in the bucket and would be more beneficial to a student’s future than any college course. Don’t be penny wise and pound foolish when considering a college student arrest. This could be the most important decision of your life.