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Underage drinking a concern as students head back to college

A spokesperson with the University of Oregon said the start of the school season is when they give out the most minor in possession citations because this is when students are experimenting.

Posted: Sep. 13, 2018 6:51 PM
Updated: Sep. 14, 2018 10:13 AM

EUGENE, Ore. -- A spokesperson with the University of Oregon said the start of the school season is when they give out the most minor in possession citations because this is when students are experimenting.

University of Oregon student Tyler Morse said the process he went through to get the citation off his record was long and time-consuming. He went to eight classes, paid a fine and had to go to court.

He said it’s easy to not think of the consequences and put yourself in a situation to get cited -- but the moment you are, you realize it affects not only you but your family as well. He told KEZI 9 News he wants incoming students to be aware of the risk of drinking in public so that they are able to avoid it.

“There’s a very easy way to not put yourself in that position, and although at the time it’s very tempting, you’re going to go through a lot of hoops that you it’s going to be a long process it’s really not worth that one fun night or fun game,” Morse said.

Kelly McIver, an officer with the University of Oregon Police Department, said you do not have to be carrying around a container of alcohol to get busted.

“If an officer observes somebody who seems to be intoxicated who's giving off all the signs -- slurred speech, unable to walk straight, blurry eyes, things like that -- they can have the probable cause to issue them a citation for minor possession of alcohol,” McIver said.

Student Fran Mor said there's no way to stop MIPs from happening, especially on game days.

“Through the game day culture, there’s so many people you know out and about. And you know people want to tailgate, and so people put alcohol in water bottles, and you know consolable bottles,” Mor said.

The University of Oregon said they can either cite a student or report the incident to the dean and let the school handle it.
Police encourage students to reach out for medical help if they've had too much to drink. It is part of an amnesty law in Oregon, so you won't get cited.

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