Questions Posted to "Ask a Dispatcher"
Q. What are the penalties for furnishing alcohol to a minor over 18 but under 21? If the minor is married to the person furnishing the alcohol, is it legal?
Dear Juneau Resident,
Furnishing is an A misdemeanor but can become a C felony if there are priors. Furnishing is the type of crime that lends itself to being part of a larger series of events that attract the notice of the public and police. That misdemeanor may end up being at the bottom of a list of charges and adds to penalties for more serious crimes.
Sometimes the motive of the older person furnishing the alcohol to a younger person turns out not to be 'innocent' and JPD has heard every excuse. It is tough to swallow that the older person was exposing the younger person to the blending of a certain red wine with a particular spaghetti sauce. Especially if multiple bottles of wine are involved. Yes, JPD has heard the 'Spaghetti Defense' before.
If furnishing person's motives and judgement leads him or her to a series of bad decisions, and bad decisions often come that way once people are impaired, furnishing will be addressed as part of a larger investigation into sexual assault, assault, DWI motor vehicle crash, etc...and adds to the penalty for the more serious crime.
Alaska Statue 04.16.051 says a legal spouse can give someone 18 to 21 years old alcohol, but not on a licensed premise like a bar.