Exercise Your Constitutional Rights During Police Contact

Do not say anything.

Do not answer any questions.

Do not blow into a preliminary breath test (PBT) device.

  • You may receive a civil infraction for your refusing a PBT.  However, by taking a PBT you will be furnishing the police with evidence to use against you for MIP which is a criminal charge.

  • Courts in Michigan have found it is a violation of the 4th Amendment for police to force a minor to take a PBT without a search warrant.

If not driving, you (usually) do not have to provide ID or identify yourself.  Unless the officer has specific facts that give rise to reasonable suspicion that you are or have committed an offense.


Politely but firmly tell the police office that you will not answer any questions without an attorney present and that you will not blow into a PBT.  (You may need to repeat this several times to the police officer)


Remember, anything you say or do will be used against you by the police.


What To Do After You Have Been Charged With An MIP

Do not plead guilty simply because you drank some alcohol, failed a breath test, or admitted drinking to the police.  It is your constitutional right to plead not guilty.  The prosecutor has the burden of proof in all criminal matters.  In order to be convicted, there must be proof beyond a reasonable doubt that you are guilty.


Do Not Go It Alone

If you plead guilty to a minor in possession of alcohol (MIP) charge at the your arraignment, the court will accept your plea and you cannot change your plea without filing a motion and obtaining the court's consent.  By entering a guilty plea at the initial arraignment you are waiving all your rights, including the right to the assistance of an attorney.


It is crucial to have an attorney represent you when you are charged with a crime.  An attorney will ensure that you receive copies of the police report and any videos from your arrest.  It is important that you do not plead guilty to a crime without having the opportunity to review and discuss the evidence against you with your attorney.


MIP Is A Criminal Offense

An MIP conviction is reportable to the Michigan State Police and the Michigan Secretary of State and will be listed on your driving record.  A conviction for MIP becomes a part of your permanent criminal record.  A criminal conviction on your record may affect your ability to obtain future employment and professional licenses.


First Offense MIP Penalties

MIP first offense is a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of $100.00 and community service.


A conviction for MIP first offense may result in a term of probation not to exceed 24 months.  Probation terms generally include:  no use of illegal drugs, no use of alcohol, random drug and alcohol testing, substance abuse counseling and treatment, community service, at least monthly reporting to probation, fines, court costs, and costs for substance abuse counseling and treatment.


If you violate any terms of probation the court may hold you in contempt of court and impose jail.


Second Offense MIP Penalties

In addition to first offense penalties, a second offense MIP will result in suspension of ALL driving privileges for 30 days followed by a 60 day restricted license.  The maximum fine increases and if you violate probation, you can receive up to 30 days in jail.


Third Or Subsequent Offense MIP Penalties

In addition to first and second offense penalties, a third offense MIP will result in suspension of ALL driving privileges for 60 days followed by a restricted license for 305 days.  The maximum fine increases and if you violate probation you can receive up to 60 days in jail.


The law office of Frederick J. Taylor specializes in the aggressive defense of MIP offenses and can assist you in obtaining a favorable result.   REMEMBER.....

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