Top 4 Criminal Charges for College Students

Going into a new atmosphere can sometimes be stressful. Many students are starting new chapters of their lives when entering their first year of college as a freshman. These undergraduate students will gain new friends, learn more about their chosen career fields, and will experience new opportunities each step of the way. College is a very exciting place where a student can learn, grow, and find themselves. During this time, it is common for these young adults to make mistakes during college that may negatively alter their life forever.  When entering a new environment away from home, students are sometimes not on their best behavior since they are no longer under direct parental supervision. From minor penalties to being arrested, criminal charges are given to college students very frequently.

Disorderly Conduct 

Students are known for celebrating their grades or any other accomplishments with parties. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, parties are not permitted to take place. Yet, many students throughout the United States still threw events disregarding the safety of others during the coronavirus phase 1 period. During phase 1, there were strict rules, regulations, and stay-at-home-orders to control the outbreak. The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) informed everyone about how imperative it is to social distance, wear a mask, and stay at home. It was also recommended that there should not be group settings that contain more than 10 people. 

As a result of undergraduate parties, colleges and universities have been seeing a dramatic increase in students who’ve tested positive for the virus. Violations of these policies can be considered as disorderly conduct,  a minor offense that can result in monetary fines, probation, suspension from school, and possibly imprisonment. Disorderly conduct is a class C misdemeanor that can include disturbing the peace, being drunk in public, reckless behavior, excessive noise, and any other behavior that may affect public safety.

Drugs and Alcohol Present in Students

Most students enter college as soon as they graduate from high school, usually at the age of 18. At this age drugs and alcohol may be present and used due to peer pressure, television, and just out of curiosity. Underage drinking is commonly seen in colleges across the United States and may result in several consequences, even though it is not exactly a crime. In 2019, it was reported that 8% of 8th graders and 30% of 12th graders drank during the last month, and 4% of 8th graders and 14% of 12th graders binge drank during the past 14 days, according to a Monitoring the Future Survey. Alcohol usage under the legal age of 21 can possibly lead to paying a large amount of fines and posting bail.

According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Marijuana is one of the most used drugs and is very widespread among young people in the United States. The possession of marijuana is still seen and considered as a federal offense; however, small amounts of marijuana is decriminalized in the state of Connecticut along with a few other states. 

Driving under the influence is a serious matter that is not only seen in adults, but also in young college students. The act of being impaired while being behind the wheel can lead to traumatizing events and severe consequences. In Connecticut, charges vary depending on if it’s your first, second, or third offense. Each offense may include fines, imprisonment, and/or a Pretrial Alcohol Education Program for alcohol intervention and substance abuse. All in all, students are faced with many opportunities to break the law once they enter their college years.

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