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What To Do When… Your Teenager Enters Party Season.
What To Do When… Intro 00:01
Welcome to What To Do When… A podcast from real lawyers with real perspective, where we explore a variety of legal issues and scenarios. Each week we focus on a new topic and discuss what to do when and if any of these legal scenarios ever happened to you or a loved one. With over 40 years of combined legal experience, our hosts offer their unique perspectives and insights on a range of real life legal situations.
Jackie Critzer 0:28
Hi, and welcome back to what to do when podcast here in Richmond, Virginia at Critzer. Cardani. I’m Jackie.
Scott Cardani 0:33
I’m Scott, what’s on the docket for today Jackie?
Jackie Critzer 0:38
What to do when your teenager enters party season?
Scott Cardani 0:43
Interesting. So what are we talking about Jackie? I mean, it’s Halloween, almost Halloween, but we’re not really talking about a Halloween party or a Christmas party are we?
Jackie Critzer 0:53
I mean, really, teenagers, probably a party season year round, if we’re gonna be really honest. Exactly. And it’s not all teenagers, we’re not suggesting and not all teenagers party badly with illicit drugs or underage drinking. But really what we want to focus on is, is when that’s happening, and your teen is going to such a party, and you know, it’s going to be like that. Or if you’re hosting a party, and you’re offering maybe not drugs, but you’re offering the teenagers, so they can have wine coolers, they can have drinks, or whatever. And really just kind of focusing on what the parent responsibility is, whether it’s one person, a boyfriend, or a girlfriend who’s come over, or if it’s a whole bunch of kids. So there’s lots of lots of ways to go forward in this in this podcast.
Scott Cardani 1:40
Yeah. And it’s also the other thing we want to cover is it’s about your child. In, you know, so often as parents what we do, we think is okay, but we’re putting our child at risk. And, as Jackie and I were discussing before, today, we got on the air, we were talking about how when we are kids, and I was a kid before Jackie was a kid, things really changed. I mean, parents used to take responsibility for their kids, in a way that is it just isn’t there now. So when, like when I was a kid, if I was at my friend’s party, and I drank, and I did something stupid afterwards, my dad was after me. He didn’t go to the parents and say, How dare you allow this to happen? They had, they had a perspective that I had a responsibility to, again, as we said in the last podcast, control my own behavior. And because I didn’t doesn’t mean it’s somebody else’s fault, but I don’t think we live there anymore. What do you think?
Jackie Critzer 2:35
I don’t think we do either. I mean, I remember as a, you know, in the youth group, there was a family that was within my best friend’s youth group. And they would host some of these kids and their friends and their boyfriends and grinned and just have a big party. And they all had to put their keys in a basket. And they would offer not hard liquor, but wine coolers to the best of my recollection. And in today’s society, what would that look like, if you had all these kids over? They didn’t, you know, they drove they drove to your home, and you make them put their keys, let’s let’s just talk about that. They put their keys in the basket, and then you know, they’ve had 1, 2, 5 doesn’t matter. They’ve, they’ve been drinking, and they’re like, give me my keys back. I’m gonna leave. What can you do to stop them?
Scott Cardani 3:18
Nothing. That’s the problem. I mean, you can, everybody makes this social contract at the beginning, right? But what enforcement power do you have? You have none. And that kid could say I’m leaving, you know, and you can’t stop them, I guess you could physically stop them, then you get a charge for that. You know, what people don’t understand is there’s a charge called contributing to the delinquency of a minor. And what that basically is, is anything you do, that would put a minor in a position where he could get charged hurt, or at risk, you as the adult are responsible for that. So in this case, if you bought the alcohol, you’ve contributed to the delinquency of a minor. Even when you give the keys back properly, at that point, somehow somebody would try to spend that into you contributed to this link. When see because you knew he was drunk, you should have called his parents. Exactly. I was just thinking you should have called his parent or something called the police that stopped him from driving. Of course, nobody’s gonna do that. Because why? Because we’re having an illegal party with kids.
Jackie Critzer 4:17
You just gave them alcohol…
Scott Cardani 4:18
You just gave them alchohol -So I mean, not smart. I realize some parents out there just want to, they think it’s better in my house than them doing it somewhere else. At least I can control the environment, watch it. That’s not true.
Jackie Critzer 4:35
If it’s your own child, maybe you have maybe a little more control in that arena. Not that we’re advocating that you let allow your underage teenager to consume alcohol in your home. We’re not advocating that. But of all the teenagers you’re going to have in your home, you probably have the most control over that teenager they’re going to be driving your car because they can’t own a car yet. They’re going So now you can take the keys now you can, in some way disable the car so that they can’t go anywhere. But you really don’t have that control once you allow their friends or someone else to come into the mix.
Scott Cardani 5:11
I know what if they charged you with kidnapping? I mean, seriously, that’s what kidnapping is.
Jackie Critzer 5:16
Preventing them from leaving, absolutely.
Scott Cardani 5:18
Preventing them from leaving. I mean, there’s so many I could think of so many charges that could happen with this. What seems like a good idea to have this party. I remember, probably 10 years ago, there was this whole thing where parents were inviting everybody over to have sex in their house. Oh, my Lord. And there are all kinds of parties that had really found names, and I won’t go into it. But I had to prosecute or not prosecute. I was on the defense side of a lot of those cases in the city in it was, I was just flabbergasted. Number one that people put themselves at such a risk. Sure. And there was always somebody that did something wrong, went too far. You know, whatever. didn’t exist. Yeah. Or it did for five minutes. It didn’t five minutes later, but we talked about a little bit yesterday, but what a risk and what a travesty to have somebody hurt on your watch. And then all of a sudden, not only are you charged, but you’re dealing with the guilt, and all those things all because you know that you thought you were doing a good thing. And we just don’t think sometimes about the consequences of our behavior. And again, your child’s responsible. And the next thing really to think about like is, as we go into holiday season, there’s a lot of downtime, you’re not at school. So, you know, we let kids come over and hang out at the house. And, you know, a lot of people have basements and they go, Oh, we’re gonna go down hanging out in the basement mom for four hours don’t come down, wink and nod. Those things that happen. You know, I don’t play like that. Because I have done juvenile law for so stinking long. And I see. I see what’s happening before it’s happening. I’m like, Oh, my gosh, this is this case, this case, this case, this case, but again, what we think we’re doing that, okay, thing can just have so many negative consequences for you. But more than that situation for your child.
Jackie Critzer 7:15
Walk it out, just a little. I mean, is, I think I’ve said before, you’ve just got to look all the way what’s the worst case scenario? What’s the best case scenario, it’s probably going to fall somewhere in there. But if your teenage son or sons invite some friends over, and let’s say it’s guys and girls, and they’re all going to stay the night? Well, what could they possibly get into? Do you have a liquor cabinet? Is it unlocked and most people know I guess liquor cabinets anymore, but somewhere where you store your alcohol, beer, wine, open bottles of of liquor, that you probably aren’t met drawing a line on there and, and so forth. It’s not a party, you didn’t invite them to come over, you didn’t pay to drink, you didn’t provide them the shot glass and, and the the cold ice, the glass for the beer. But what if they get into it anyway?
Scott Cardani 8:05
Exactly. And that’s, you know, it’s going to depend on a lot of factors in that thing. But the bottom line is, yes, you can be charged. Again, if the minimal for contributing to the delinquency of a minor because you didn’t lock up your liquor, you allowed them to be in a place where there was liquor, and you knowingly allowed, you know, there’s all these subtle permissions and you may win the case, eventually. I’m not even saying that I probably could defend that in some respects. But that’s not the issue. The issue is you’re gonna have to hire a lawyer, he’s gonna exactly defend yourself, you’re gonna have to go to court, your neighbors.
Jackie Critzer 8:43
We’re not saying you shouldn’t let your teenagers have or middle schoolers, for that matter. have friends over. I mean, I think that’s perfectly reasonable. And I think that’s fine. But it is important to think about not just the kid coming over and your own child, but what culpability you might have should something not go well? And what if they sneak out? What if they sneak out and convince your perfect angel who’s never snuck out ever to go sneak out and they go run around a pickup place.
Scott Cardani 9:08
Steal a car…
You know, the neighbor’s keys are in the car, and they’re not thinking of is stealing. They’re really I find most kids, when you really sit downtime, I didn’t think through that. I just was thinking there’s a car and we can take a quick ride and it’d be fun. They’re not thinking about the fact that they just permanently deprive somebody of the use of their vehicle, and that’s a felony and auto theft and all these kind of things, but just say that too. You’re responsible for things that go on in your home, right? Sometimes it’s going to be a civil consequence. Sometimes it’s going to be illegal criminal contents, or consequence. Excuse me but you’re responsible. And the other thing I wanted to hit with this too is say you’re really permissive about your children downstairs like they have just the girlfriend over. Okay. And you know, you’re there downstairs for four hours. orange tape comes up, everybody leaves. Everything seemed hunky dory next day you got a knock on your door. Your son raped Joanie last night. And you’re like, No, I saw him leave, it was totally fine.
Jackie Critzer 10:11
Right? Everything was fine. There was no screaming, no fuss, and no…
Scott Cardani 10:15
When she left. And you’re just the point is, we have to, especially now I think more than ever, because of what we started out with. People don’t take responsibility for their own behaviors anymore. We see this all the time. And we can give some examples, but no kid is going to take responsibility for their own behavior. So you end up, especially your house, your kid. And quite frankly, if we’re honest, if you’re a boy, sure, you know, and people don’t like that. And people are gonna give try send me hate mail. But that’s every day I deal with it. So you can walk a mile my shoes, and I’ll show you what, why you’re wrong about that. But it happens. It happens all the time. And it happens in very weird situations. And it happens when somebody freely gave consent. Right? We had a college case one time, a long time ago, were two parties willingly interacted, we’ll say for quite some time. And then one of the parties later felt like they didn’t like it.
Jackie Critzer 11:24
Scott Cardani 11:25
Buyer’s remorse, and then so they take charges out.
Jackie Critzer 11:29
And did they allege then that that the consent was not real consent? I mean, how did they How did that how would that have come about?
Scott Cardani 11:37
Yeah – they just basically say, well, he should have known or she should have known that I didn’t consent. But your actions, but that’s doesn’t matter. And that’s where we are in society folks. I’m just telling you.
Jackie Critzer 11:48
So I was kissing you back. But I wasn’t consenting to that. Exactly.
Scott Cardani 11:51
I was kissing you back. And I was touching you. But I really didn’t want to do that. And you should have known that.
Jackie Critzer 11:57
But if you’re the parent, and these young people at your house, at a party, maybe at a party that you said was okay to throw, and there’s no supervision and parts of the house are out of sight out of mind. What sort of culpability? Are you putting yourself in jeopardy of if if the sexual assault charge comes or rape, rape charge comes between these two young people imagine being the parent of the child who let’s say was she was raped at this party? Who you’re going to go after?
Scott Cardani 12:29
Exactly. And so things we don’t think about? And we don’t really process because we just feel like, Hey, Mom, can I have a party next weekend with, you know, and you’re like, why not. But I think as parents we have to think through and we also have to educate our children. That, to me is the biggest thing I have people come on at a time, I’m so glad you educated me because I didn’t think about this. And we’re not trying to put fear into you. We’re trying to put sensibility out there, where and again, these are all things that all go together. We don’t want to put our kids in situations where their lives are ruined, over something that shouldn’t have happened. And maybe didn’t even happen. That’s even though that’s the most horrendous, sort of dramas are heinous. Try to put them together. heinous thing I can think of is too, and we see it all the time kids get blamed for things they didn’t do. And it comes out in the end. Honestly, a lot of times, Jackie and I have learned to take this really long approach to things. And a lot of times when we wait through it, and we walk through it, and ever it’s like why aren’t you doing something right now? Why aren’t you doing something right now? You get to the end. And the person who is the accuser said, well, I shouldn’t have done this, because it really didn’t happen. Sorry, that kid’s life has already ruined in a lot of respect. Think of what social media did to that kid for six months, during this process, and all these things happen. And if you’re out in social media defending it, then you’re looking like you’re guilty. There’s all these things that happened. And for what, for somebody who, for whatever reason, didn’t like what happened? Are we talking about buyer’s remorse are we talking about, you know, the other thing we’ve seen a lot in our career is a boy or girl who maybe likes somebody, not so much in their social stratosphere will say, you know, maybe they’re in the popular crowd, and she’s not bad, or vice versa, or economic status or color or race or all kinds of things. And they enter into this relationship moment. Well, it’s usually a moment. So you know, and then all of a sudden, at the end of the day, somebody thinks they got a relationship and the other person thinks they got something else.
Jackie Critzer 12:32
Sure. A freebie.
Scott Cardani 12:56
Then all of a sudden there’s this disconnect that happens, and then one person feels very shorted hurt. Yeah, all those things come on. And all of a sudden, there’s charges and things coming out and police reports and all these things. And at some point, it doesn’t even matter that it was consensual, because you’re in a world of hurt. In the end, it does. And all those things matter. But in that moment, your whole life is trashed over an allegation that. But we didn’t teach our kids that, you know, that’s what we, we’ve got to teach our kids that those things nowadays, especially with the internet, and the media, I mean, you can post one picture and it can ruin your life.
Jackie Critzer 15:44
Well, we, you know, we’ve sort of started with parties and gotten away from maybe not a party, maybe just a small gathering. But at the end of the day, the real issue is number one, if you host a party, and you provide alcohol, or you have alcohol available, and maybe you didn’t provide it, you just turned a blind eye to it, you could be facing trouble with contributing to the delinquency of a minor, if they get a hold of it. And for some reason, leave your house because you can’t make them stay. Or, or if they engage in some unlawful behavior inside your home and later end up catching charges for you just be wise about who’s coming into your home, and, and how that might impact your future culpability.
Scott Cardani 16:29
Or if he dies, because he drank too much or gets hospitalized, then the civil side kicks in. So yeah, all those things as a parent we have to watch out for.
Jackie Critzer 16:37
I think you need to be wise about when you’re hosting. And also when you’re sending your child, right? Be proactive in your parenting, teach your young people that boundaries matter, that just because they’re going to a party doesn’t mean they have to participate in whatever’s happening at the party, I don’t think most parents aren’t saying, have a good time, don’t get too drunk. I mean, most of the time, it’s, you know, drinking, right, the parents are going to be home, right. And now Now imagine being the parent who’s hosting. So try to think about what it would be like to be sending your child to somebody else’s home and what you would expect that parent to do and the precautions you would expect that parent to have, as well as teaching and guiding your young person on how to properly behave in such a situation. And finally, Scott?
Scott Cardani 17:22
I think the final thing for me is just really protecting your children, and teaching them and that’s what this podcast has really been about is like trying to educate people about the realities, and sending a kid out into the world with some information. Like even if things do go bad, and a police officer comes well, as we’ve said, many podcasts, that’s not the time to talk, you know, and, you know, all those things that we’ve been trying to implement, because ultimately want to protect our children, and we shouldn’t be putting them in harm’s way. We shouldn’t be putting them in bad situations. And sometimes we do it out just pure ignorance we don’t think through, it doesn’t seem like that big of a deal. You know, like I said, like the girlfriend in the basement doesn’t seem like that’s a big deal. Right? Normally 90% of the time, it probably isn’t. But it can be. And we just have to be thoughtful, not paranoid, but thoughtful, and protective and protective. That’s our job as parents to protect our kids. And again, we’re not in the same place we were 15, 20 years ago. And we have to realize that all the stuff that’s changing in our culture, which some people champion and love and all these things, there is a consequence to the other side, there’s a backside of that, that we as parents have to understand, regardless of our stance, regardless of our position that there is with everything. There’s a back side, and if you don’t know the back side, and you haven’t thought through the whole picture, then you’re going to be sitting there going like how did this happened to me? Or your child’s gonna be like mom…you didn’t warn me.
Jackie Critzer 18:59
Why didn’t you tell me before this happened?
Scott Cardani 19:00
Why didn’t you tell me? Why don’t you tell me I didn’t have to talk please, why don’t you tell me not to have this party? Why didn’t you and that happened. So we appreciate your time.
Jackie Critzer 19:09
As you can tell, we are passionate about our young people. We have a lot of young people in our lives our children and bonus children and and those we’ve represented and will continue to represent. So we do have a strong passion for young people and juveniles and they under juvenile sounds like they’re already juvenile delinquent. But we just mean teenagers, young people who are, you know, under age if you will, not not above the age of majority. So bear with us as we continue to indulge our passion for young people as well as expand our podcast library. So we look forward to seeing you on another podcast and be sure to like and subscribe.
Scott Cardani 19:44
What To Do When… Outro 19:37
We hope you’ve enjoyed this episode of What To Do When… For more episodes, be sure to subscribe to our podcast and we encourage you to check archives to listen to previous topics. Tune in next week for a new episode and some fresh perspective from Critzer Cardani.
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