Minor in Possession
Minor in Possession of Alcohol Program
Each year the juvenile division of the Johnson County District Attorney’s Office could charge hundreds of juveniles with the crime of Minor in Possession, the crime commonly referred to as MIP. Of those hundreds, many juveniles were merely at a party, did have a drink of alcohol, and were therefore guilty of the crime. Rather than charge the youth through district court or put them on diversion, if they have no prior offenses, were not highly intoxicated and were cooperative with police, they are now offered a chance to participate in the MIP Program. If the program is completed successfully, the case is formally declined or “no charged”, therefore creating no record. An additional benefit to this program is that participation in the MIP Program does not render a juvenile ineligible for diversion on a future offense. In 2009, the program was put in place by Juvenile Court Services and the Johnson County District Attorney’s Office and approximately 120 juveniles per year have taken advantage of this opportunity.
What is it?
When a juvenile is arrested for MIP and the report is sent to the District Attorney’s Office, a charging decision is made. If a juvenile meets the criteria for the MIP Program, a letter is sent to the juvenile and his or her family explaining the program and what is expected. Generally, a juvenile must obtain a drug and alcohol evaluation to ensure that there is not a larger substance abuse issue, follow any treatment recommendations, complete community service hours, and not violate the law for 4 months. The cost of the program is $50.00.