If you’re under 21, and you consume alcohol, you could be charged with consumption of alcohol by a minor.  However, if the alcoholic beverage was consumed within view of your parent or guardian, you cannot be prosecuted for minor in consumption of alcohol.  For a first offense, consumption of alcohol by a minor is a Class C misdemeanor, punishable by a fine only of up to $500.  If you receive deferred adjudication (i.e., “non-conviction”) probation, you are required to complete eight to twelve hours of alcohol-related community service.  If you’ve been previously convicted of consumption of alcohol by a minor, you must perform twenty to forty hours of community service.  However, if you’ve been previously convicted two or more times of minor in consumption of alcohol, you can be receive up to 180 days in the county jail, and a fine of up to $2000. If you’ve been arrested or charged with minor in consumption of alcohol, you need serious legal help. 

Call the criminal defense lawyers at Berlof & Newton, P.C.  Our attorneys each have over 15 years of experience in the practice of criminal defense law.  Free consultation.  Call us today at 214.827.2800, or contact one of our attorneys directly by using the “Get Legal Help Now!” form, located in the left margin of this web page. Texas Penal Code Section 106.04. 

CONSUMPTION OF ALCOHOL BY A MINOR.

  (a)  A minor commits an offense if he consumes an alcoholic beverage.

(b)  It is an affirmative defense to prosecution under this section that the alcoholic beverage was consumed in the visible presence of the minor’s adult parent, guardian, or spouse.

(c)  An offense under this section is punishable as provided by Section 106.071.

(d)  A minor who commits an offense under this section and who has been previously convicted twice or more of offenses under this section is not eligible for deferred disposition.

For the purposes of this subsection:

(1)  an adjudication under Title 3, Family Code,  that the minor engaged in conduct described by this section is considered a conviction of an offense under this section;  and

(2)  an order of deferred disposition for an offense alleged under this section is considered a conviction of an offense under this section.

(e)  Subsection

(a) does not apply to a minor who:

(1)  requested emergency medical assistance in response to the possible alcohol overdose of the minor or another person;

(2)  was the first person to make a request for medical assistance under Subdivision

(3)  if the minor requested emergency medical assistance for the possible alcohol overdose of another person:

(A)  remained on the scene until the medical assistance arrived; and

(B)  cooperated with medical assistance and law enforcement personnel.

  Texas Penal Code Section 106.071.  PUNISHMENT FOR ALCOHOL-RELATED OFFENSE BY MINOR. (a) This section applies to an offense under Section 106.02, 106.025, 106.04, 106.05, or 106.07.

(b)  Except as provided by Subsection (c), an offense to which this section applies is a Class C misdemeanor.

(c)  If it is shown at the trial of the defendant that the defendant is a minor who is not a child and who has been previously convicted at least twice of an offense to which this section applies, the offense is punishable by:

(1)  a fine of not less than $250 or more than $2,000;

(2)  confinement in jail for a term not to exceed 180 days; or

(3)  both the fine and confinement.

(d)  In addition to any fine and any order issued under Section 106.115:

(1)  the court shall order a minor placed on deferred disposition for or convicted of an offense to which this section applies to perform community service for:

(A)  not less than eight or more than 12 hours, if the minor has not been previously convicted of an offense to which this section applies; or

(B)  not less than 20 or more than 40 hours, if the minor has been previously convicted once of an offense to which this section applies; and

(2)  the court shall order the Department of Public Safety to suspend the driver’s license or permit of a minor convicted of an offense to which this section applies or, if the minor does not have a driver’s license or permit, to deny the issuance of a driver’s license or permit for:

(A)  30 days, if the minor has not been previously convicted of an offense to which this section applies;

(B)  60 days, if the minor has been previously convicted once of an offense to which this section applies; or

(C)  180 days, if the minor has been previously convicted twice or more of an offense to which this section applies.

(e)  Community service ordered under this section must be related to education about or prevention of misuse of alcohol if programs or services providing that education are available in the community in which the court is located. If programs or services providing that education are not available, the court may order community service that it considers appropriate for rehabilitative purposes.

(f)  In this section: (1)  a prior adjudication under Title 3, Family Code, that the minor engaged in conduct described by this section is considered a conviction; and (2)  a prior order of deferred disposition for an offense alleged under this section is considered a conviction.

(g)  In this section, “child” has the meaning assigned by Section 51.02, Family Code.

(h)  A driver’s license suspension under this section takes effect on the 11th day after the date the minor is convicted. (i)  A defendant who is not a child and who has been previously convicted at least twice of an offense to which this section applies is not eligible to receive a deferred disposition or deferred adjudication. Added by Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1013, Sec. 9, eff. Sept. 1, 1997. Amended by Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 76, Sec. 4, eff. Sept. 1, 1999; Acts 1999, 76th Leg., ch. 1207, Sec. 3, eff. Sept. 1, 1999. Amended by: Acts 2005, 79th Leg., Ch. 949, Sec. 30, eff. September 1, 2005.

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