Centre County Furnishing Alcohol to Minor Case

Cops-In-Shops Follow Up Investigation

The client was a Penn State student that was driven to a local liquor store or six-pack shop, and the store or shop was part of a “Cops-In-Shops” investigative program conducted by the State College Police. The police watched the client enter the store by himself, purchase the alcohol, return to the vehicle, put the alcohol in the trunk, and then leave the store parking lot in the vehicle. The police also exited the store and followed the client and the vehicle in which he was riding to a State College apartment building. As the client was getting out of the car, the police approached him and the other occupants of the vehicle and detained everyone to conduct a Furnishing Alcohol to Minors investigation. After discovering that the other occupants of the vehicle were under the age of 21, the client was charged with Unlawful Acts Relative to Liquor, which is basically a Furnishing Alcohol to Minor charge that is found under the Liquor Code in Pennsylvania.

The client retained experienced Centre County defense lawyer Jason S. Dunkle to provide representation. At the preliminary hearing, Attorney Dunkle met with the district attorney to discuss the possible resolution of the case. Because the client had previously received ARD in the past for a non-DUI criminal offense, the client would not be considered for an ARD resolution for the Furnishing Alcohol to Minor charge by the Centre County District Attorney’s office. As ARD was not an option, Attorney Dunkle was prepared to fully challenge the case and advised the assistant district attorney that the client had never relinquished possession of the alcohol to the underage occupants of the car. In most Centre County Furnishing Alcohol to Minor investigations, the police wait until the over 21-year-old person completely abandons or leaves the alcohol in the vehicle by entering an apartment or simply watching the vehicle drive away with the alcohol. In this particular case, the police initiated contact with the client immediately upon his exit from the vehicle, so client still had the opportunity to retrieve the alcohol from the trunk area. An agreement was reached in which the client was required to complete some community service, and the district attorney would dismiss the misdemeanor Furnishing Alcohol to Minor charge in exchange for a plea of guilty to a summary charge of Disorderly Conduct. Upon client’s completion of the community service and plea of guilty to the Disorderly Conduct charge, the Furnishing Alcohol to Minor charge was dismissed. The experienced State College expungement lawyer, Jason Dunkle, then filed an expungement petition with the Centre County court to have the misdemeanor charge of Furnishing Alcohol to a Minor expunged from the client’s records.