High school celebrations and DUI

As the weather in Minnesota finally transitions from the long winter to reliably warm spring days, high school students near the dates of prom and high school graduation and graduation parties. For some, high school prom and graduation parties are a rite of passage where underage drinking occurs. The reality is that a season of celebration that throws alcohol into the mix can result in danger, death and DUI.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the months when many high school proms and high school graduations occur, April, May and June, are also the months when drinking and driving accidents are at their highest. In addition, car accidents are the leading cause of death among teenagers and nearly 40 percent of teenage car accidents are caused by alcohol.

Often, parents believe that supervision will reduce the danger associated with underage drinking but research on binge drinking shows that heavy alcohol consumption can produce negative long-term effects. According to the National Institutes of Health the region of the brain that controls risky behavior is not fully developed until age 25. Further, teens who begin drinking at age 15 are four times more likely to form a dependence on alcohol than individuals who start drinking at age 21.

Finally, experts say that open and regular dialogue between parents and teenagers helps teens form better choices. If parents create expectations, then teens are less likely to engage in dangerous behavior including drinking and driving. This spring let us help all the young people in our communities celebrate their achievements beyond graduation.

Source: Courierpress.com, “Prom, graduation seasons accelerates dangers of underage drinking, drugs,” Nichole White, 4/4/11

Max Keller has won countless jury trial cases involving misdemeanors and felonies, sex crimes, and DWI’s. He is a member of the Minnesota Society for Criminal Justice, which only allows the top 50 criminal defense attorneys in the state as members. Max is a frequent speaker at CLE’s and is often asked for advice by other defense attorneys across Minnesota.

Years of Experience: Approx. 20 years
Minnesota Registration Status: Active
Bar & Court Admissions: State of Minnesota Minnesota State Court Minnesota Federal Court 8th Circuit Federal Court of Appeals State of Maryland

What to Do If You Have Been Charged with a Criminal Offense

Minnesota recently passed a public safety bill that brings sweeping changes to the state’s juvenile justice system. While minors sometimes run afoul of the law, the juvenile justice system seeks to account for the differences between children and adults. Therefore, while the penalties for adults convicted of crimes focus on punishment, those for juveniles are aimed at diversion and restorative practices.
If a county medical examiner’s work is called into question in one case, it can affect all those they were a part of. An independent review is underway of murder cases involving the testimony of the long-time medical examiner in Ramsey County, Minnesota. The review comes in response to a wrongful murder conviction that was recently vacated on the basis that the medical examiner gave flawed medical testimony.
You might ask how plea bargains work if you are considering settling your criminal case by skipping the trial phase. A plea bargain in Minneapolis, MN, happens when a criminal defendant agrees to plead guilty or no contest instead of having the prosecution prove his or her guilt at trial. The prosecution agrees to reduce the charges, recommend less harsh penalties, or drop the charges altogether in exchange for a guilty plea.