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Defense Attorney for College Students in Knoxville

UT Student Defense Lawyer

Knox County Lawyer for University Students Facing Criminal Charges in Tennessee

For many young adults, college is the first time that they have ever been away from home for an extended period of time. It is also their first chance to experiment, push boundaries, and to have as much fun as possible before getting serious about the future. Unfortunately, a single instance of reckless experimentation could result in a lifetime of problems and challenges. If you are a college student who is facing criminal charges of any type, the law firm of Jeffrey Coller, Knoxville Criminal Defense Attorney is ready to help you. Our team has the knowledge and experience to defend the rights of university students in all manner of criminal proceedings.

Common Criminal Charges for Students

While a university student can certainly be charged with just about any criminal offense, certain charges are especially common, including:

  • DUI: Driving under the influence is probably the most common charge associated with college-aged individuals. Under Tennessee law, a DUI is a misdemeanor for a first offense, but a conviction carries mandatory jail time along with other serious consequences. The penalties are even more severe if a drunk driver causes an accident resulting in injuries or death;
  • Underage drinking: For a person under the age of 21, the possession or consumption of alcohol is a criminal offense. The charge is usually a Class A misdemeanor that carries jail time of up to 11 months and 29 days for a conviction. A defendant can also face required community service, expensive fines, and a driver's license revocation;
  • Drug possession: Simple possession of an illegal or controlled substance is a misdemeanor for a first offense, even if the drug is marijuana. This can be especially problematic for college students from "legal" states or those who qualify for medical cannabis in their home state;
  • Property crimes: Shoplifting or stealing from the school or other people or businesses can result in theft charges. Breaking into a dorm or other school building or defacing school property can lead to charges for burglary or vandalism. The severity of such charges generally depends on the value of the property in question; and
  • Sex crimes: If you are facing charges for rape, sexual battery, or any other sex crime, our team will help you build an aggressive, responsible defense.

Being charged with a crime is difficult for anyone, but when you are a college student far from home, the situation can be even more stressful. Criminal allegations could affect your financial aid, scholarship, and student loan status, and you could face repercussions from the school even if you are never convicted. A conviction is especially serious, and it could affect your future eligibility for employment, housing, and professional programs.

Helping Young Adults Protect Their Futures

Attorney Jeffrey Coller has seen too many college students try to handle criminal charges on their own. In such cases, it is easy to underestimate the challenges and the consequences associated with pleading guilty. At our firm, we are equipped to help Tennessee college students take advantage of diversion programs and other alternatives to conviction when appropriate. These programs could help you avoid a permanent criminal record in exchange for probation or education classes. If you do not qualify for a diversion program, we can help you explore other options, including plea deals. When necessary, we will represent your interests in court, as well.

Contact Our Knoxville College Student Defense Lawyers

If you or your son or daughter is facing criminal charges as a college student, contact our office for help. Call 865-281-1000 for a free, no-obligation consultation with Jeffrey Coller, Knoxville Criminal Defense Attorney today. We serve clients in and around Knoxville, Knox County, and the University of Tennessee campus.

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