Tighter penalties for fake IDs - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

Tighter penalties for fake IDs

In an effort to curb underage drinking and the use of fake IDs, District Attorney Ben David is expected to announce a new component of his underage drinking deferred prosecution program Monday, Sept. 12. (Source: WECT) In an effort to curb underage drinking and the use of fake IDs, District Attorney Ben David is expected to announce a new component of his underage drinking deferred prosecution program Monday, Sept. 12. (Source: WECT)
WILMINGTON, NC (WECT) -

District Attorney Ben David announced a new component of his underage drinking deferred prosecution program in an effort to curb underage drinking and the use of fake IDs.

David was joined by NC ABC Commission Chairman Jim Gardner and UNCW Police Chief David Donaldson at a press conference Monday on the UNCW campus.

According to the ABC Commission, at least two-thirds of college students are using fake IDs. Starting Oct. 1, anyone who's caught using one will be charged and lose their license for 60 days, without exception. 

"In many respects, we're going to now be the toughest place in North Carolina to get a fake ID," David said.

The law calls for offenders to forfeit their license for a year, but it's not being enforced.

"Of the 550 convictions around the state last year, real licenses were only taken in seven cases, so it's effectively a law that's not being enforced," he said. 

The initiative is part of a deferred prosecution program, with the goal of minimizing the harms of underage drinking.

The ABC Commission chairman talked about how reducing the number of fake IDs will also reduce the number of drunk drivers, and cases of alcohol poisoning. David said the initiative won't stop all underage drinking, but if anyone if caught with a caught with a fake ID, they'll be faced with a more serious punishment.

"In addition to the hours of community service they're going to do, that's going to take them from a driving school to a hospital setting to a courtroom to watch treatment courts, we're going to take their license for that 60 day period and they won't be allowed to drive during that time," said David.

Officials said that modern fake IDs are becoming more difficult to detect.

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