June 3, 2013 By Wallin & Klarich

Recently, one of our experienced Wallin & Klarich attorney saved his client from receiving a driver’s license suspension and probation term after having charges of a minor in possession of alcohol dismissed. Experienced criminal defense attorney, Matthew B. Wallin, had the charges against his client dismissed after meeting with the prosecutor and judge. If convicted, the client could have faced a mandatory one –year driver’s license suspension and 3 years of informal probation since he was under 21 years of age.

Matthew%20Wallin%20Profile%20Pic.jpg “If convicted of a minor in possession of alcohol in California, the client will face a mandatory one-year driver’s license suspension,” explained Mr. Wallin. “When my client’s privilege to drive is in jeopardy, it is essential that I make all necessary efforts to achieve an outcome which will not result in a driver’s license suspension.”

Attorney Wallin began by meeting with his client to discuss the facts and circumstances surrounding the charges. Together, Mr. Wallin and his client outlined the client’s education, employment, and plans to attend graduate school. Mr. Wallin then referred his client to an alcohol education program.

After taking these vital steps, Mr. Wallin met with the prosecutor and judge in order to seek a favorable resolution. Ultimately, the court agreed to dismiss the charge based upon the client’s lack of a prior record and voluntary attendance at alcohol education classes. Due to Mr. Wallin’s tremendous efforts, his client did not receive a driver’s license suspension or a probation term.

If you are accused of a minor in possession of alcohol (“MIP”), you need to contact the Law Offices of Wallin & Klarich immediately. Our MIP defense attorneys know what the prosecutor must prove in order to convict you. The prosecutor will need to prove the following elements in order to convict you of an MIP:

• You were under the age of 21 years old when you were found in possession of alcohol;
• You were in possession of an alcoholic beverage; AND • You were on a highway, street, or any other public place when you were found in possession of alcohol.

The experienced criminal defense attorneys at Wallin & Klarich have successfully defended clients accused of a MIP for over 30 years. Your Wallin & Klarich defense attorney can help you raise one of the following defenses on your behalf:

• Lack of Legal Possession

    o The prosecutor may not convict you of a MIP if you were not in legal possession of the alcohol. For instance, imagine that you and your friends are drinking in a public park. If there is only one bottle of alcohol and it is away from you on a park bench, the prosecutor will face a significant burden in proving that you were in possession of the alcohol.

• Momentary Possession

    o The prosecutor may not convict you of a MIP if you can prove the following two elements:
      1) You possessed the alcohol in order to abandon, dispose of, or destroy it; AND 2) You did not prevent law enforcement officials from obtaining the alcohol.

    • Delivery

      o The prosecutor may not convict you of a MIP if you possessed the alcohol while making a delivery at the reasonable direction of a responsible adult parent or adult legal guardian.

    • Legal Age

      o You may not be convicted of a MIP if you were 21 years of age or older at the time of the incident.
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