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Common Crimes Among College Students

College is often a time for experimentation and learning your limits. Many students begin drinking and/or trying drugs for the first time in college. The crimes that are associated with the college party lifestyle come in a vast array of seriousness. Here are five crimes that are prevalent in the collegiate demographic.

Public Intoxication

Two College Girls Drinking

Public intoxication in Arizona, also known as “drunk and disorderly,” is when a person is under the influence of alcohol or even drugs in a public place. The telltale signs of this offense often include lewd or disorderly behavior, a loud or obnoxious voice, or aggressive behavior. College students generally don’t have an extensive amount of experience drinking and may be more likely to underestimate their behavior because they don’t know the effects that alcohol may have on them.

Minor in Possession

Most students enter college at 18 years old. This means that for the first two or three years of their college experience, they are not old enough to drink in the United States. For this time period, college students are generally living on their own in dorms or apartments, and they feel like they are fully mature adults. This leads many students to drink prematurely. Purchasing a for a minor, or being under the age of 21 and in possession of alcohol, is illegal and may result in a Minor in Possession charge.

Possession or Use of a Controlled Substance

The term “controlled substance” means many things. We typically think of this term as referring to illegal drugs; however, this term can also be applied to the misuse of prescription medication. College students may feel the need to use drugs or medication to enhance their performance or to relieve stress. In recent years, drugs such as Ritalin have been used to help students focus for exams. Obtaining this medication or any drug illegally puts students at risk for serious criminal charges.

Driving Under the Influence

Handcuffs, Car Keys & Alcohol

Among college-age people, there is a lot of buzz about DUIs. As many as one in four college students has admitted to driving after drinking. Drinking and driving can result in fatal collisions and is always a serious offense. Many college students do not have a good sense of how alcohol affects them, and because of this, they may think it is okay to drive when it is not. Most people don’t have a clear understanding of how their Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) fluctuates based on just a small amount of alcohol.

Rape & Sexual Assault

Rape is a crime that occurs in colleges more often than anyone would like to admit. As many as one in four college females will fall victim to rape, usually involving drugs or alcohol. This very serious crime occurs most often at parties when women are under the influence of drugs or alcohol. Men can also be victims of rape. Anyone who is intoxicated is not of a sound mental state to provide consent. Most rape cases go unreported due to the personal nature of the crime. Rape is usually committed by a person that is relatively close to the victim.

Resources

Bureau of Justice Statistics: Terms and Definitions
Website

National Institute of Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism: Harmful Alcohol Use
Website

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