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It's the Law


The average age at which teens start using tobacco is 12 years.

Smoking is a “pediatric disease.” Smoking during the teen-age developmental years causes permanent genetic changes in the lungs forever and increases the risk of lung cancer, even if the smoker quits. Tobacco is highly addictive and is most likely to take hold during adolescence. Smoking makes you smell bad, gives you bad breath, makes your fingers turn yellow, and gives you premature wrinkles. Smoking inhibits athletic performance immediately. There are over 4000 chemicals (including 43 known carcinogens and over 400 toxins) in tobacco. Tobacco, whether smoked or chewed, is considered a “Gateway Drug,” and is the leading cause of nicotine-related deaths in adults. Beware of other drugs that are smoked (marijuana, K2...) see drug chart for more information.

It is illegal to sell tobacco products to a minor (under 18) and illegal for a minor to purchase or possess them.



It is against the law to reproduce, modify, or alter a motor vehicle driver’s license or to possess one which has been reproduced, modified, or altered.



The average age at which teens start drinking is 13 years.

Possession or sale of street drugs or controlled substances, including drugs prescribed for another person, is illegal.

The purchase or possession of alcohol by a person under age 21 is illegal.

Any person who sells, furnishes, or knowingly allows consumption of alcoholic beverages to someone under age 21 shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and could be subject to a fine of up to $1,000 and/or imprisonment for up to one year. These penalties apply if a property owner allows minors to consume alcohol or other drugs on his/her property and can be held liable for the subsequent consequences of such minors driving after consuming alcohol on their property. It is unlawful to have an open container of alcohol in an automobile. If convicted, a misdemeanor may be on your record for life. You could be responsible for revealing this information on college and job applications and could affect your acceptance or employment options. Yes, it is a big deal.



Zero tolerance makes it illegal for anyone under age 21 to drink and then drive a vehicle even if they have consumed just a small amount of alcohol. When a police officer thinks someone has been drinking, he will stop them. S/he may ask the person to take some tests like walking heel to toe or standing on one leg. These tests will help the officer decide if the person should have a chemical test of his/her breath, blood, or urine. The result of the chemical test is known as the Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) level.

Missouri law, effective August 28th, 2005 states that if the police find you visibly intoxicated or you have a detectable Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) of .02 and you are under 21, they can charge you with “minor in possession (MIP) by consumption”. This means that you can be charged with an MIP for consuming alcohol without holding the alcohol container.



Parents and other adults who furnish alcohol to a minor may be financially liable in a civil suit brought against them by anyone who suffers injury or property loss because of that intoxicated minor.




There are penalties and fines for curfew violation. Each municipality has its own curfew restrictions.

For St. Louis City and County standard curfews for those under 17 are as follows:

Fri.-Sat. 12:00 a.m. - 6:00 a.m. and Sun.-Thurs. 11:00 p.m. - 6:00 a.m.

For St. Charles City standard curfews for those under 15 are as follows:

Sun.-Sun, 10:00 pm – 4:00 am





Published by Parent Network of Catholic High Schools, June, 2013...................................................