legal trouble

Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by Born-To-Fly_024, Jan 26, 2010.

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  1. Born-To-Fly_024

    Born-To-Fly_024 Member

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    Howdy everyone. I'm a junior in high school and have been working hard my whole life to get into the Academy. Unfortunately, the other night I got in trouble for being in a college parking lot late at night with friends. The police searched my friends car and found a bottle of liquor that was nearly empty. I'm not gonna lie, we did have a little bit of it. I know it was a dumb move on my part, and im not going to ponder over it. Anyways, I got charged with Civil Posession of Alcohol by a Minor. When I asked the cop about it he told me that It shouldn't show up on my record, and the judge will make me do some program. However, I'm not too sure about this. Does anyone have any input? I'm sketchin really hard right now cause I worked so hard to get here and I don't want it all thrown away for this mistake.
     
  2. usna1985

    usna1985 USNA Alumnus

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    I've sent you a PM.
     
  3. NYRower182

    NYRower182 Member

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    You can most likely have this purged from your record if it does show up. More likely than not, completion of this program will purge it. Thats just my knowledge.
     
  4. Luigi59

    Luigi59 Banned

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    Despite it no longer being "on your record" you will be asked:

    "Have you ever been...."
     
  5. sprog

    sprog Member

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    Just be honest about it on your application. From my experience with any application with the government (not just for service academy admission, but also for jobs that require security clearances etc.), a minor civil violation (that is how you have categorized it, at any rate) is less of a concern than lying to cover it up (which includes lying by omission). Admitting the incident took place shows an isolated incident of poor judgment. We are all human, and as long as it is isolated, I don't see it being a huge barrier. Omitting it, or denying that it occurred, shows a character flaw that is the antithesis of what service as a military officer is about. I'm sure there will be a narrative section on your application to explain yourself and to issue a heartfelt mea culpa.

    best advice-don't do it again.
     
  6. tothetop14

    tothetop14 Member

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    Different decisions

    I'm a parent of a USNA candidate who has now received her appointment. July 1 is going to come quickly. The conversations in our house since she expressed an interest in attending a SA have been about how she has made a very mature, different and difficult decision to pursue something totally different than all her friends have chosen. Her actions leading up to starting in July must also be mature, different and thus difficult.

    Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but I think it's the kind of leader our SAs are looking for that can make the decisions that are difficult, like to leave a group of kids drinking in a parking lot because the potential for a problem exists. I'm not saying our daughter has always made these hard decisions, but she has come to the realization that what others think of her because she isn't following THEIR lead doesn't matter.

    Your parents are right when they beg you to stay away from the type of activity that could put what you are aspiring towards in peril. Well, maybe look at it this way: Your parents may not always be right, but they are NEVER wrong.

    If you are only aspiring towards a SA because it's a tuition free situation, look deeper. I'm guessing you are a leader capable of making the decisions for yourself that your peers will later respect.

    The other respondents are right about honesty, own up to the mistake because who among us is without fault? A bit of soul searching and admissions to realizing that your decisions are different than your friend's decisions and thus your actions must be different could go a long way.

    Best of luck! Oh, boy am I glad I'm not a teenager these days, it's tough out there! Back in the early 1980's, I could do what I wanted (or not) without the whole world knowing - thank you texting and Facebook!
     
  7. marvin7794

    marvin7794 Member

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    Someone get Oprah off of the soap box. I'm sure you'll be alright man. Be careful with that alcohol stuff or you'll have to rename yourself born-to-swo. Good luck.
     
  8. MIDNDAD

    MIDNDAD Member

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    As a parent here is my suggestion: If you have not already done so tell your parents what happened and ask them to consult an attorney. The attorney will be able to tell you what your options are and how not have this show up on your record. On a minor civil matter like this an attorney will likly be able to come close to 100% certainty this incedent will not be on your record and therefore not have to be reported to the Academy. Without an attorney your odds of success will be less and worst case you get a hardass judge and he does not cut you any breaks. The downside to an attorney is it may cost your parents a couple thousand dollars.

    You have high asperations and have just learned one of what I call the basic lessons of life "stupid hurts". The next life lessons you are learning are how to deal with your self inflicted problems and most importantly what do you learn from this experience and how do you conduct your life going forward.

    Best of luck to you.
     
  9. marciemi

    marciemi USMA Alumnus

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    I still think an attorney doesn't mitigate when you hit the point on the Dodmerb physical or the application that says "Have you ever been..." as Luigi points out. To me, lying about it, and then somehow having it come to light (maybe another applicant mentions it - trying to get your slot, maybe the counselor trying to be helpful points out how much you've learned from an experience you claim never happened), I think would 100 percent end your chances.

    You made a mistake. Admit it. You learned from it. You now have great essay question material. Of course all your references will say how great you are. I don't think this is at all insurmountable. Denying it may be.
     
  10. usna1985

    usna1985 USNA Alumnus

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    ^^^

    Also, as noted, many BGOs ask whether you've ever had any run-ins with the law. In addition, as I recall, forms for security clearances require you to disclose any legal issues (broadly speaking -- I've long forgotten the exact language) and specifically require you to include anything that has been expunged, etc. Ditto, BTW, with Bar applications for attorneys and probably other things as well.

    Obviously, if you make a relatively minor mistake (i.e., not rape, murder, armed assault, etc.) as a young person and don't repeat it or make other, similar mistakes, the impact of such a one-time event will likely fade with time.
     
  11. MIDNDAD

    MIDNDAD Member

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    You misunderstand, I do not advocate lying in any way shape or form on the application. As a parent this would be a case where I would step in to defend my child as a stupid decison could derail a lifelong dream. Hiring an attorney will faclitate finding a solution with the legal system that justice will be served in some manner but nothing will appear on an offical record.

    It allows a truthful respose of no to the question: Have you ever been convicted......

    Now if the question is: Have you ever been charged...... It does not help and I agree lying will make matters worse.
     
  12. sprog

    sprog Member

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    I'm not an SA grad, but when filling out the forms for ROTC at VMI, I think it asked if you've ever been arrested, cited, etc. That is, I don't believe it was specific to convictions. My memory is not 100% on this, but I think that was the case.

    The OP mentions that the citation he received was of a civil nature. Thus, technically, there can't be a conviction under criminal statutes no matter what the ultimate disposition of his case is. He would, at worst, be found "liable" (as opposed to "guilty"). Nonetheless, he was cited by civil authorities, and he would need to report it if the "have you ever" question comes his way. AFROTC used to make cadets report any "entanglements" with law enforcement prior to and during enrollment in classes. This even included speeding tickets (which, in some states, is also a civil/administrative violation).
     
  13. harmi

    harmi Member

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    This entire subject irriates me beyond belief....if you are considering lying by ommission, you are still lying...what about the HONOR CODE the Naval Academy holds in such high regard? A lie is a lie, and yes, we all make mistakes, we are all human, however, some mistakes cannot come with a DO OVER...and sometimes the price paid is a very costly one...

    What about all of the other candidates who are trying to obtain an appointment the HONEST way, by walking a straight line and making sure their moral compus is on keel?

    I don't believe anyone who has had an altercation of any sort with any branch of the law should consider applying to any of the Service Academies...I feel they dilute the Honor, Respect and Intergity that these Academies have strived so hard throughout the years to protect!:mad:
     
  14. sprog

    sprog Member

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    Ouch. A little harsh.

    The kid screwed up. It's hardly an offense of moral turpitude, and it isn't even criminal in nature (the OP notes it being a civil violation). As long as he doesn't make a habit of it, admits his mistake, and accepts responsibility, I don't see any need to destroy his hopes of going to the Naval Academy. As I said, he just needs to be honest in reporting that the incident happened. Hopefully, it is a lesson to not let this sort of thing happen again, and it will be one isolated episode of bad judgment for which the OP will be appropriately (i.e. in proportion to the offense) punished (via alcohol awareness classes, or whatever). Everybody screws up, especially teenagers. No need to crucify him.

    I mean, should a kid who gets a speeding ticket for being 10 miles an hour over the speed limit be forever banned from filing service academy applications? That is an involvement with law enforcement. It seems to me, that if that kid admitted it, learned from it, and took his punishment that should be the end of it. If there is a habitual pattern of lawlessness, or if there is one offense that is violent or exceptionally grave in nature, I agree, there is no place for that person in on of the SAs. But that is not the case with the OP, and while he did a dumb thing, it shouldn't ruin his dreams.
     
  15. sprog

    sprog Member

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    So is speeding.

    You said that any "altercation" with law enforcement should be a ban on applying to a service academy. By making the assessment of a difference in severity between speeding and drinking underage ("apples to onions" to quote you), you have weakened your initial argument.

    I stand by my earlier post.
     
  16. harmi

    harmi Member

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    Sorry Sprog...a kid in a car with alcohol makes me question his character and the lack of the ability to make unpopular decisions such as NOT partaking in such activites....not at all to be compared with a "Speeding ticket 10 miles over the limit" Are you forgetting the deadly hazards associated with cars, young people and alcohol??? Heaven forbid...

    No, I agree, it was a mistake and I don't believe it should ruin his goal of a Service Academy appointment, but I do believe I would have serious concerns for the nature of the incident if I were on an admissions board for any of those academies....

    Alcohol + Teens + a motor vehicle= DISASTER!!! Certainly does not seem like Academy material to me...sorry...but perhaps my standards are set a little high....

    Guess we could agree that we disagree.
     
  17. sprog

    sprog Member

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    Sorry, but you're changing the subject a little bit. I don't condone what the OP did, but your own words were that any involvement with law enforcement should be a ban on applying to an academy. By your admission that there is a difference between speeding and underage drinking, you have altered the message of your original response. That is, you have, by implication, noted that there is a difference in severity of those two breaches of the law, and that (in your opinion) one of the breaches is recoverable while the other is not. I assume that is the point of your "apples to onions" comment. The use of the speeding example was to point out that any sort of total ban fails to recognize the nuances associated with each indivdual case.

    Parenthetically (and really this has no bearing to the OP's question) there is no indication that the OP drove drunk, impaired, or anything of the sort. There is a differece in severity between drunk driving and drinking underage. Both are against the law, and I'd agree with you that DWI should probably bar admission to one of the SAs. That offense shows a wanton lack of consideration for the safety of others...it isn't the same as drinking underage. You may disagree, and that's fine, I'm just pointing out that each individual case is different.
     
  18. sprog

    sprog Member

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    also, just so this won't become a two-way discussion on this thread, I'll go ahead and make this my last post. Any questions, you can always PM.
     
  19. Kero

    Kero Member

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    How is having the "character to make the unpopular decision to drive the speed limit" any different. Drinking age is just as arbitary of a law as speed limit, that is why it's different all over the world and this country too until recently.
     
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