Six Spring Break Crimes to Watch Out for in 2022

March 3, 2022 Criminal Defense

Spring Break is the biggest week in the college social calendar. Florida receives torrents of visitors during “Spring Break season,” mostly consisting of young college students from across the country traveling here for a beachside vacation. Floridian college students also flock to the beaches during this time, hoping for some rest and relaxation to break up their academic calendar. During this time, many college students party hard, drink in excess, do drugs, etc. What are the most common crimes committed during Spring Break season and how can we help? Find out with this blog post!

Possession of Alcohol by a Minor

Most college students are around 18 at the time of entering college. Therefore, many college students cannot legally purchase alcohol until they are well into their college education. When college students go away for Spring Break, they usually buy alcohol for their minor friends or use a Fake ID to purchase alcohol. This can result in minor in possession charges. If you are under 21 and holding an alcoholic beverage, have the alcoholic beverage in a bag you are holding, or have the alcohol in your presence, you can be charged with actual or constructive possession of alcohol by a minor. The offense is classified in Florida as a second-degree misdemeanor punishable by 60 days in jail, or six months of probation, and a fine of up to $500. For a second, or subsequent conviction, the offense is classified as a first-degree misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail, or one year of probation, and a fine of up to $1,000. Other penalties also apply! For a first conviction, you will lose your driver’s license for 6 – 12 months. For a second, or subsequent conviction, you will lose your driver’s license for 2 years.

Drug Possession

Most commonly, this would be for marijuana possession. In Florida, the actual or constructive possession of marijuana is still very illegal without a valid medical prescription card.  In Florida, simple possession of marijuana is applicable when you possess less than 20 grams. It is classified as a first-degree misdemeanor. Felony possession of marijuana is applicable when you possess more than 20 grams. That offense is classified as a third-degree felony. Drug Possession could be actual, meaning you have it on your person, or constructive, meaning it is within reach but not actually on you.

Driving Under the Influence

Getting around during your Spring Break vacation means that someone might be renting a car, driving their own, or operating a friend’s vehicle. Ensure that you are not under the influence of drugs or alcohol when driving since this is a time for a sharp uptick in DUI arrests. Florida is home to some of the strictest and most severe DUI laws. A DUI conviction could result in incarceration, fines, community service, installation of safety interlock driving devices, administrative repercussions, civil repercussions, and the suspension or revocation of your driver’s license. In Florida, a DUI is shown by the state showing that your normal faculties were impaired, or you had a blood alcohol or breath alcohol level of .08 or above. The penalties can get even more severe when you are under 21 and get a DUI, the DUI results in the infliction of serious bodily injury on someone or results in property damage.

Public Intoxication

Public intoxication, or disorderly intoxication, is classified as a second-degree misdemeanor offense. It is common for Spring Breakers because it criminalizes being drunk in public and causing a disturbance. As you can imagine, a lot of drinking happens on Spring Break vacations, and most of it public, with beachside bars and bar crawls being the most popular attractions for college Spring Breakers. This offense is punishable by a combination of 60 days in jail, six months of probation, and a fine of up to $500.

Possession of a Fake ID

Florida law prohibits possessing, making, or selling a fake ID. These cases most often involve college students since it primarily affects those possessing those IDs – minors. Native Floridian college students and traveling students alike try their luck each Spring Break at the local bars and pubs with Fake IDs, resulting in confiscation of the ID at the least, and arrest at the most. In Florida, possession of an ID that was not produced lawfully by the appropriate government agency is classified as a felony punishable by 5 years in prison and a fine of $5,000. If you only changed the date of birth, as is common with college student fake IDs, the offense is charged and punishable as a second-degree misdemeanor.

Disturbing the Peace

Disturbing the peace, breaching the peace, or disorderly conduct is a common Spring Break crime for many reasons. For one, it is a somewhat vague and extremely broad criminal offense that can include a lot of behavior. Spring Break often involves drinking, drugs, and partying, which can result in a lot of the situations criminalized by this statute. These situations include, but are not limited to, fighting, being unreasonably noisy, inciting a riot, loitering, using obscene or abusive language. This offense is considered a second-degree misdemeanor charge, punishable by a combination of 60 days in jail, 6 months of probation, and a fine of up to $500.

Tallahassee Criminal Defense Attorney

If you have been arrested on Spring Break in Florida, contact a qualified Tallahassee criminal defense attorney as soon as possible to discuss your legal matter. Don Pumphrey and the members of the legal team at Pumphrey Law Firm have decades of experience defending Florida’s college students against the above-listed criminal charges and will fight for your freedom. Give us a call at (850) 681 -7777 or send an online message to discuss your legal matter during an open and free consultation with an attorney in our legal team.

Written by Gabi D’Esposito

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