The Case, David Lee Laase vs 2007 Chevrolet Tahoe, A07-2023, December 17, 2009, was another 4-3 split decision – with the majority reversing the Minnesota Court of Appeals, to rule against the civil property rights of the individual
The Minnesota Supreme Court, in a 4-3 decision, has now ruled that Bong Water (water which had been used in a water pipe) was a “mixture” of “25 grams or more” supporting a criminal conviction for Controlled Substance crime in the first degree. The crime is the most serious felony drug crime in Minnesota, with a maximum penalty of 30 years in prison for a first offense. The case is Minnesota v Peck, A08-579, Minnesota Supreme Court, October 22, 2009.
The majority opinion takes a literal view, arguing in essence that any amount of a substance dissolved in water makes that water a “mixture” containing that substance. Perhaps. But, since Minnesota’s criminal prohibition laws are organized to make greater quantities of drug possession a more serious crime than smaller quantities, such a simple-minded view defeats the purpose of the quantity-based severity levels.
In Minnesota, a person arrested on a police officer’s suspicion of DWI has the legal right to consult a lawyer prior to responding to a request by police to consent to chemical testing. A problem often arises due to the fact that most of these situations happen in the late night or early morning hours when most people – and most lawyers – are asleep. Most people who find themselves in this unwelcome circumstance never believed they would be, and may not know a criminal lawyer or DWI defense lawyer to call.
Sometimes they call any Minnesota lawyer they can think of, even though they might not be a criminal lawyer, or DWI defense attorney. This article is intended to help that lawyer.
There is no statute or law that requires that young person to consent to a search by providing a breath sample simply because they are walking down the street, or found at a house party, with an odor of an alcoholic beverage about them. A young person in this position can simply refuse to consent to such a search.