The quick and definitive answer to the headline query posed above is this: No, there is not. In fact, there are a number of distinct statutory enactments pursuant to which Colorado law addresses different aspects of alcohol possession and consumption as relates to minors.
And, in noting that, it merits pointing out, additionally, that every one of those laws potentially provides for a harsh outcome in a given case.
In today’s post, we spotlight two laws that can certainly be deemed vanguard enactments in the state’s enforcement arsenal targeting underage alcohol possession and consumption.
One of those laws is Colorado’s Minor in Possession statute, an enactment that we note is problematic to minors for two distinct reasons.
For starters, this underage drinking legislation renders it an easy matter for a state prosecutor to prevail as to proof, given that it only needs to be established that a youthful offender possessed alcohol. It doesn’t matter why or how the minor came to be in possession.
And, second, a so-called MIP offense is an alcohol-related crime, which means that a conviction results in a permanent record that can adversely affect a minor in many ways as he or she enters adulthood.
Another Colorado drinking law focused centrally upon minors also targets — and in a principal way — adults. The state’s Contributing to the Delinquency of a Minor law can result in both a possession offense for an underage person and a serious criminal charge against an adult who is alleged to have played an unlawful role in abetting a criminal act.
The laws focused upon underage alcohol possession and use in Colorado are multiple and complex, and they provide for potentially stiff penalties. Questions or concerns regarding minors and alcohol can be addressed to a proven criminal defense attorney who routinely handles cases involving youthful offenders.