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Crime-Related Concerns on Spring Break

  • Do you have big plans this spring break? Do those plans involve spending some time in jail? Unfortunately, poor choices often lead to arrests in popular spring break locations. For example, each year close to 1,000 people are arrested on Gulf Coast beaches for underage drinking and drug charges, according to local news station ABC 3340. If you want to avoid falling victim to these statistics, here are some tips to help you stay on the right side of the law during this spring break.


    Have Fun but Avoid Dangers on Spring Break


    Spring break is a time to spread your wings a little bit and have some fun, but if you get carried away with the fun, you could end up in handcuffs. If you are planning some spring break entertainment this year, here are some tips to help you avoid danger or an arrest while you party.


    • Drink responsibly. Sure, your spring break fun is going to involve a bit of alcohol, but remember to drink responsibly. Many of the violent crimes, car accidents and other issues that surround spring break occur because alcohol is involved. Also, if you are going to drink on the beach, check the local laws first. Some beaches do not allow it.
    • Don’t drink if you aren't 21. Just don't do it.  The police are looking for underage drinking during spring break.
    • Respect the police. If your activities catch the eye of local law enforcement, be respectful. Don't interfere if they are trying to arrest someone or ask you to break up the party. Never have an attitude with the police, because that will only serve to draw attention to you and your own actions.
    • Avoid fighting. Don't let your emotions get the best of you if it's going to lead to a public fight. This is a great way to end up in handcuffs.


    It really is simple to stay out of jail while you are on spring break, but you have to be smart before you start having fun.


    What to Do If You Are Accused of a Crime


    In spite of your best intentions, your fun may get a little carried away. So what should you do if you are accused of a crime while enjoying your spring break excursion?


    First, know what to do if an officer arrests you. According to the ACLU, you do have some rights when interacting with an officer, and you need to know what these are. Here are some pointers:


    • You can remain silent. You are allowed to remain silent when being arrested or accused of a crime. While you do have to show your ID or state your name and age, you do not have to say anything else. Simply tell the officers you wish to take advantage of that right.
    • You can refuse a search with no warrant. Unless the officer has a warrant, you don't have to concede to having your belongings searched. In fact, if you let them search your stuff, it could hurt you in a later court case.
    • You can ask for a lawyer. Not only can you ask for a lawyer, but you should ask for one. Get in contact with a criminal defense attorney as quickly as possible so you can start protecting your rights and gathering key evidence.


    Above all, be respectful and calm. It's easy to panic when you think you are going to get arrested, but panic will only cause you to make mistakes that could lead to further charges. It's never okay to run from the police or to fight if they are trying to arrest you.  Go calmly with them and get your lawyer on board as quickly as possible so you can learn what the next steps are.


    Have Fun, but Be Smart


    Don't let one spring break decision ruin your future. The best course of action is to avoid these problems in the first place. As you head out for your fun this spring break, be careful and responsible. But, if you make a mistake, make sure you get a lawyer to help you defend yourself.