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Year: 2010

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Countermeasures at a DWI Stop: the Party Question

What are some potentially effective countermeasures, then? If the window is not open, or open about an inch or so – that is plenty to pass the drivers license and insurance card through, but not enough to expose the odor of alcohol. You can refuse to do lower the window to force the officer to make a forceful command to do so, making it difficult for them to argue you did so voluntarily. When speaking to the police officer through the almost closed window, the driver can avoid eye contact. This prevents the officer from being able to observe the cliché “bloodshot watery eyes” they imagine come only with drinking. It’s a good idea to have the drivers license and insurance card in hand immediately after stopping, well before the police officer walks up to the vehicle to request those. They are in your hands already, which are in plain sight on the steering wheel. If asked “have you been drinking tonight?” you are not required to answer or answer responsively.

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Legislative Update: The Minnesota Bong Water Case

Will Minnesota lawmakers heed the call of the Minnesota Supreme Court and public outrage and undo the “Minnesota Bong Water Case?”

A Bill has been introduced in the Minnesota House, H.F. No. 2757, to amend Minnesota Statutes section 152.01, subdivision 9a, to read:

Subd. 9a. Mixture. “Mixture” means a preparation, compound, mixture, or substance containing a controlled substance, regardless of where purity is relevant only when weighing the residue of a controlled substance.

If adopted into law, this would bring back proportionality of the severity of a drug crime to quantity.

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The Moral Peril of Minnesota Asset Forfeiture Laws

Let’s review:

The government (police) can take your property at any time if suspicious, even if you are innocent.
The burden is on you, not them, to do something about getting a court to look at it.
If you do nothing, they keep your property, your money; and you lose; without any court or judge ever even seeing the case.
If you want to do something about it, you need cash for a lawyer and court filing fees. The law provides the government a free lawyer and requires them to pay no court filing fees.
The police agency that targeted you and took you down gets to keep 70% commission on the cash, valuables, your vehicle they seize from you. Could this affect their honesty about their investigation; or, the appearance of propriety?