Drug use is a major issue in Illinois. Teenagers are more likely to experiment with drugs than any other age group, because their brains are still developing and their judgement is not as developed as an adult’s. There are legal consequences to drug possession, drug use, distribution, and manufacturing and they can be harsh for minors in Illinois. Contact our drug lawyer Lemont Illinois today at (815) 290-9170 or (708) 919-5415 for a consultation.
Teenagers can easily get caught up in the excitement of trying drugs or the pressure of fitting in and end up using them on a regular basis. While some drugs may seem harmless at first glance, they can have serious consequences for teens.
Drug Use Among Teenagers
According to the National Center for Drug Abuse Statistics, drug use among teenagers is on the rise. In the nation, drug use among 8th graders went up 61% from 2016-2020 and 50% of teenagers have reported misusing a drug at least once.
In Illinois, teenagers are 4.29% more likely to have used drugs in the last month than the average American teen. Also, 82,000 or 8.69% of 12- to 17-year-olds report using drugs in the last month. Of those, about 84% have used marijuana.
There are many reasons why drug use among teenagers is so common. Depression, anxiety and other mental health issues can lead to a desire to self-medicate. Peer pressure from friends who have already started using drugs or alcohol can be difficult for some teens to resist. Lack of parental supervision may make it easier for teens to sneak around and experiment with drugs without anyone noticing.
While some drugs may seem harmless, it is illegal in Illinois for minors to use drugs, even marijuana. You or your loved one do not want a charge on record that can damage chances for education and career opportunity in the future. If you need an experienced drug lawyer Lemont Illinois, our legal team can help.
Parents role in teen drug use
Parents can help prevent their children from using drugs by talking to them about the dangers of drug use. They should make sure that the teen knows that it’s never okay to drive after drinking alcohol or doing drugs, and they should set rules and boundaries for their kids’ behavior. It’s also important for parents to be aware of what their children are doing so that they can step in if necessary.
Finally, parents should try modeling good behavior themselves by modeling responsible behavior. It is also important for parents to understand that it is illegal for them to allow minors to use drugs and alcohol in the home. In fact, there are legal consequences, such as fines and jail time, that parents can be subject to for distributing drugs or alcohol to minors or allowing them to possess or use in the home.
When a teen gets caught with drugs
If you are under 18 and get caught with drugs, you are likely to face criminal charges. Because recreational marijuana is legal in Illinois for those who are 21 and older, drug charges have changed. Possession of marijuana by a minor is no longer a criminal offense, but is instead treated as a civil law violation. This type of violation may be punished by a fine of $100-200. If a minor is found to be in possession of marijuana in a motor vehicle, their driver’s license may be suspended or revoked.
As for other controlled substances, there is zero-tolerance for minors to possess or use drugs. Typically, the minors are punished by mandatory drug counseling, probation, and completion of a diversion program. Depending on the severity of the charges, fines and jail time may also be consequences.
Additionally, if you have been charged with possession of marijuana or any other controlled substance in Illinois, it may impact your ability to secure employment or make it difficult for you to find housing. That is why it is important to have a drug lawyer Lemont Illinois that will fight for you.
Contact our drug lawyer Lemont Illinois today
As a parent, it’s important to know what your kids are doing and make sure they are safe. You should have open communication with them and ask questions about their friends and what they do after school or on weekends. If you think your child might be using drugs, try to get them into counseling and away from the environment that is negatively affecting them.
If they are charged with a drug related crime, it is important to have zealous advocates on your side. Contact us today for a free consultation and to ensure you and your loved ones are protected.