College students attending East Carolina University or Pitt Community College may know someone who has used a fake identification at one point or another. However, many students may not be aware that simply possessing a fake ID is considered a crime under North Carolina law. Use of a fake ID, like possessing one, can not only lead to criminal charges, but a criminal record if a person is convicted of the charge.
Agents from the North Carolina Division of Alcohol Law Enforcement recently conducted a crackdown on underage drinking in another part of the state after a student attending Appalachian State died from an alcohol-related incident in September. The North Carolina Department of Public Safety released data this week from the recent underage drinking probe in the high country area.
ALE agents arrested 103 people on alcohol related offenses during the investigation. Some of the people arrested were charged with multiple offenses, as officials accuse the 103 people of 155 total charges. Authorities say that among the 155 charges filed against underage drinkers, more than 30 fake IDs that officials claim were purchased online were taken from people under the age of 21. Other people were found to be using actual IDs that authorities believe were borrowed from friends or acquaintances during the investigation.
The recent Department of Public Safety announcement indicates that many of the arrests involved allegations of underage drinking or possession of alcohol. However, some people were charged with using a fake ID, or aiding and abetting underage consumption or possession of alcohol offenses.
Generally, a person need not necessarily be present at a party to face an alcohol-related offense under North Carolina law. While a recent news report does not indicate the details surrounding each of the arrests, a person may face aiding and abetting charges without even being present where underage drinking is alleged.
Source: WFMY News 2, “100+ Arrested In Underage Drinking Sting In Boone Area,” March 11, 2013