I talk to a lot of clients who are charged with an MIP or Open Intox in Ann Arbor, but also get charged with Urinating in Public (UIP). I also get a lot of clients who are only charged with Urinating in Public, which in Michigan is a misdemeanor offense. The offense of urinating in public can also be written up under a local ordinance in the City of Ann Arbor or State law.
No matter which law you’re charged under, the judge will be Judge Valvo or Judge Hines. It is more common to be written up for a UIP under the City of Ann Arbor law, and frankly much better than under State law.
Although it’s better, it’s still a misdemeanor, and still has a very embarrassing name attached to it. This is not the type of crime you want to come up on a background check. The offense of UIP is quite frequent in a college town setting as many college age kids are walking home from bars and peeing outside in public.
It’s also common during tailgate season as people don’t want to wait to use a public bathroom with large crowds. The offense of a UIP unlike an MIP cannot be taken under any “first offender” type of option, but
I have been very successful in having these types of charges dismissed, because my client was willing to begin my proactive program and demonstrate they are a good natured person who simply did a dumb thing. Self-imposed sanctions ahead of time can generally have this matter dismissed, but it is not as easy as you may think. My clients engage in proactive volunteer work, and if alcohol was involved (99 percent of the time), my client will engage in an alcohol education class.
The judge and prosecutor use their common sense, and understand the reason you committed this crime was because you were likely drunk and had to go to the bathroom; if you were sober this would not happen. This is exactly why we address the alcohol issue, as the use of alcohol lead to you breaking the law. By focusing on the root of the problem, we can forecast that going forward you likely won’t do this again, and we can likely get this charge dismissed.
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If you've been charged with a Michigan Minor in Possession for the very first time, this doesn't make you a criminal or a bad person. I see clients on a daily basis who have have never been been in trouble, but find themselves being arrested or investigated for a crime. It's quite common that a young person will get themselves in a bad situation, which results in being charged with a Michigan MIP. Being charged with this offense is not the end of the world; there are plenty of options to keep a clean criminal record.
Michigan law states that a minor may not purchase, consume, possess, or attempt to do any of those things or have any bodily alcohol content. Any bodily alcohol content is defined as either (1) an alcohol content of .02 grams or more per 100 milliliters of blood, per 210 liters of breath, or per 67 milliliters of urine or (2) any presence of alcohol within a person’s body from the consumption of alcoholic liquor.
Possible penalties for a Michigan MIP include the following:
- fines ($100 for first offense; $200 for second offense; $500 for subsequent offenses)
- court costs ($150–$700)
- probation (four months to two years for subsequent offenses)
- community service (10–100 hours)
- probation oversight fees ($30–$50 per month)
- alcohol education
- victim’s panel (Mothers Against Drunk Driving)
- substance abuse treatment/counseling
- drug/alcohol testing
- preliminary breath tests (PBTs) (may be ordered on a regular basis—daily, weekends, holidays ($5–$12 per test))
- random drug urine screens (may be ordered ($12–$70)