Sadly, teens and young adults are one of the prime age groups for drug use. They suffer from several factors working against them, such as peer pressure and the nature of their still-developing brain. Many teens will encounter drugs for the first time within their friend group or at college.

If you have a teen or college student, there’s a chance that you could one day receive a frightening call. Your child may be in jail awaiting a trial for a drug crime. How you respond to this situation can make a difference for your child’s future.

Why is this happening?

No parent wants their child to become involved with dangerous substances or face criminal charges. Some parents may take personal responsibility for this situation, but many of them feel guilty for no reason. There are several common reasons why a child could start using or handling drugs that don’t involve parenting styles.

Drugs can come into the picture during both high and low points in life. Teens may use illegal substances to cope with the loss of a loved one, divorce or another stressful event. Parties and friends can also introduce drugs as a leisurely activity. These social situations can pressure otherwise well-behaved teens to try using drugs to fit in. Teens may also view drug trafficking as a method to make money when the ability or motivation to work is low.

It’s also possible that police could catch a teen with someone else’s drugs. Remember that being charged with a crime is not the same as receiving a conviction. A fair trial might reveal that your child got caught up in a situation that they had nothing to do with.

What can a parent do?

As you likely know, drug convictions in Minnesota carry a high cost. Not only might your child need to spend time in jail if convicted, but the charges could follow them throughout educational and work background checks.

For this reason, it is essential to respond seriously and carefully. Regardless of the specific situation, parents can protect their child’s rights. A strong defense may be able to lessen the charges or prove innocence.