College is a time of personal learning, and some students truly learn things the hardest way possible. Instead of going to class to learn from their professors, they make mistakes that help them learn difficult truths about the world. For example, they may break the law, resulting in an arrest by law enforcement. If the offense occurs on campus, the process may begin with a report made to campus security professionals who then call in state law enforcement authorities.
A criminal conviction during college could lead to a host of consequences. Students may lose their financial aid or get expelled from their colleges. They may face criminal penalties including incarceration and may struggle to gain employment or qualify for professional licenses later because of their prior criminal offense. What types of charges are most commonly brought against college students?
Certain minor issues on campus may result in internal discipline, but that isn’t always the case. College authorities sometimes have no choice but to involve the local police when a college student breaks the law. They have to report certain types of offenses to local law enforcement and cooperate as the state conducts an investigation. According to an analysis of reported on-campus crimes, many offenses that occur on campus are violent ones. The top-reported on-campus crimes are burglary, assault, sexual assault, fondling incidents and vehicle thefts.
Common off-campus offenses
Many college students do not get arrested for something that occurs on campus but rather for something they do during their free time. Quite a few criminal charges brought against college students relate to experimentation with substances.
Underage alcohol use can lead to minor in possession charges. Impaired driving charges are also relatively common among college students. Beyond that, drug offenses are also relatively common. Both possession and distribution charges may occur.
Some students try drugs while they are at college and get caught. Others might transfer drugs to others. A student with a prescription for ADHD medication, for example, might monetize their leftover medication by offering it to others during finals week.
The charges that a college student faces can have dire implications for their educational future and freedom in some cases. Most college students are not mature or financially stable enough to handle the matter on their own period they may rely on support from their parents to properly address criminal allegations. Retaining legal support and encouraging a student to defend against pending charges could be one way for a parent to reduce the negative impact that a youthful mistake may have on the college student they love.