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Conway Criminal Law Blog

Off-campus crimes can impact a student’s educational goals

Many college students, including those who attend Coastal Carolina University, may find themselves staring down a criminal charge.

It is no secret, for example, that drugs and alcohol are common at parties attended by college students. Of course, underage drinking and public drunkenness are illegal, as is the possession of any controlled substance.

On a related point, South Carolina law enforcement officers will not hesitate to enforce the state’s laws prohibiting driving under the influence of either alcohol or drugs.

Moreover, drugs and alcohol often contribute to other criminal charges, including disorderly conduct and even assaults.

Even for a first-time offender, a conviction on any of these charges can lead to jail time, fines, probation and other penalties. A college student convicted of a crime may also have to explain the conviction as he or she goes forward with his or her professional and personal life.

Coastal Carolina University will punish certain off-campus crimes

Coastal Carolina University’s Code of Student Conduct makes it clear that the school will investigate and punish common college crimes, including those that happen off campus. Most common college crimes are also violations of the Code of Student Conduct.

For example, the University’s Code says the school will address all felony charges, assaults, and drunk or drugged driving cases even if the incident happened off campus.

The consequences for these violations can range from a written warning up to expulsion from the University. Even if a student also faces criminal punishment in the local court, the school has the authority to impose its own discipline.

While the federal government has loosened its rules against awarding financial aid to students with drug convictions, a drug or other criminal conviction may still affect a student’s other scholarships and privileges.

The bottom line is that a student who is charged with a crime can face potentially far-reaching consequences from multiple directions. They should be well aware of their legal options.