Oklahoma's Oldest DUI Defense Firm

Attorneys Stephen G. Fabian Jr. and Brian P. Young

Can a passenger have an open container?

On Behalf of | Dec 14, 2020 | DUI - Drunk Driving |

In the state of Oklahoma, you don’t need to be actively drinking and driving to get pulled over. In fact, simply having an open container of alcohol in your vehicle could result in a criminal charge. Over the years, most states have signed open container laws that make it illegal for drivers, and sometimes passengers, to have open containers of alcohol in their vehicle.

Can your passenger have an open container?

As the driver, you probably know that you’re not allowed to have an open container without risking a DUI charge. But what about your passenger? If they’re not driving, can they enjoy a drink while you’re on the road?

The state of Oklahoma prohibits both drivers and passengers from having an open container of alcohol while riding in a moving vehicle. You don’t even have to be drinking it; simply possessing the container in a vehicle is illegal. Possessing opened containers of alcohol on the street or in an alleyway is also against the law.

If you’re caught with an open container of alcohol, you could be facing a misdemeanor charge that comes with a $500 fine and up to six months in jail. You might also have to pay $100 to a trauma care fund. If you get caught drinking the alcohol, you might get a misdemeanor charge that comes with a $100 fine and up to 30 days in jail. Either way, you might want to hire an attorney.

How might an attorney help you with a DUI charge?

An attorney may be able to challenge the prosecution’s evidence, resulting in a reduction or dismissal of charges. For example, they might argue that the results of a breath test weren’t accurate or that certain pieces of evidence were obtained illegally. If successful, you might be looking at reduced punishments.