Can my friend get in trouble for using a fake ID at the liquor store, after the fact?

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Can my friend get in trouble for using a fake ID at the liquor store, after the fact?

A friend of mine used a fake id to purchase alcohol from a liquor store. The liquor store sold him the alcohol after asking for his id and they looked at it and let him leave. After he left, the liquor store called the police and reported his license plate saying that he was involved in selling alcohol to minors. The police then called his house. Can the police still charge him with something even though no one caught him or confronted him about it while he was using it? He wants to know if he should cooperate with the police and admit to anything?

Asked on November 5, 2010 under Criminal Law, Wisconsin

Answers:

M.T.G., Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 11 years ago | Contributor

Yes, he can get in trouble by using a fake identification and I would not suggest that he lie to the police about anything.  That will get him in to even bigger trouble. Is your friend a minor for the purposes of buying alcohol (i.e., under 21)? Did the liquor store see him sell it to a minor?  Then maybe all he was really guilty of is buying it himself.  I would speak with a criminal defense attorney in your area as soon as he can and discuss what his options are here.  As for charging him after the fact it will depend on the above witness (the liquor store owner) and what he saw.  Did the liquor store know the id was fake?  Then why would he sell it to your friend?  These questions also may have some bearing on the matter.  Good luck.


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