The Christmas holiday should be a time of merriment, friendship, and family. We all want to have an enjoyable time when Christmas rolls around, and at the very least, we don’t want to end up in jail because of a momentary lapse in judgement.
Because of the festive occasion that Christmas is, it’s no surprise that the partying and pleasure seeking can sometimes get out of hand. It’s also no surprise that, when alcohol is involved, Christmas functions can set the table for unfortunate interactions with law enforcement.
Whether it’s a DUI, DWAI, public disturbance or something else entirely, there are a lot of ways that a holiday get together can go from Christmasy to criminal. To help you avoid jail this Christmas, the legal team at Matthew A. Martin, PC are offering up these tips.
#1: Have a plan for partying.
If you do decide to indulge in alcohol or other forms of intoxication this Christmas, have a plan for where you’re going to be, who you’re going to be with, and how you’re going to transport yourself there and back. Know in advance how you’ll deal with a changing situation, too: remember that you are in control of how your night goes.
If you are planning on traveling out of the state of Colorado for Christmas, remember to be respectful of the state laws related to cannabis possession wherever you’re going. It’s easy to take for granted the fact that Colorado has such tolerant cannabis laws; many other states do not. The last thing you want is to be charged with possession of a scheduled substance in a state you don’t even live in—on Christmas, no less.
#2: Rely on ridesharing.
With the advent of ridesharing apps like Uber and Lyft, there really is no excuse not to have a designated driver this Christmas. These apps can be an absolute lifesaver when you find that you’ve consumed a bit too much to drive, and you don’t want to run the risk of jeopardizing your freedom just to get home quickly.
Remember that many restaurants, bars, and clubs will be more than happy to call an Uber or Lyft for you. Just ask.
#3: Respect and obey law enforcement at all times.
Every Christmas, the State of Colorado turns up the heat on enforcement of crimes like Driving Under the Influence, Driving While Ability Impaired, and illegal drug possession. Police officers have been specifically trained to know what to look for in the driving behavior of impaired motorists traveling on Christmas eve—especially as the night wears on.
If you think you can outsmart the police by having a few too many and then driving home, perhaps you’re right: maybe you can, once or twice. However, it only takes one tiny mishap on the roadway for you to be pulled over, charged with a crime, and relegated to the confines of a jail cell.
So, know that the Denver Police Department and all of the other suburban law enforcement agencies will be on high alert this Christmas, and they’ll be targeting impaired drivers.
If you do find yourself in an interaction with law enforcement, keep these three things in mind:
- Always obey direct commands. Failure to comply with the orders issued by a police officer can quickly become immediate grounds for arrest and/or imprisonment.
- Never, ever resist arrest. In many cases, arrests don’t have to turn into jail time. That is, unless the suspect fights the police, in which case jail time is almost always assured. Always remain calm and compliant when dealing with police officers.
- If you’re arrested, hire an attorney the first chance you get. The legal team at Matthew A. Martin, PC knows how frustrating and upsetting an arrest on Christmas can be. Don’t dig yourself into an even deeper hole by foregoing the services of a qualified defense attorney.
Highly effective, prompt legal defense representation is absolutely critical in the days and weeks following an arrest. Contact our team if you’re in need of legal assistance this Christmas.
With a little planning, some common sense, and a healthy respect for Colorado law enforcement, you’ll be doing your part to ensure that your Christmas is enjoyable and jail-free.
Accidents and mistakes do happen, however, which is why the Law Offices of Matthew A. Martin will be available as your go-to legal resource should things go south this Christmas.
Be sure to keep our number handy: (303) 725-0017.
Stay safe, drive sober, and have a Merry Christmas!
Use these tips to avoid waking up on Christmas day in a holding cell.