Here is another unusual DWI arrest. If you are a regular blog reader, you probably know that we like to share unique non-vehicle DWI arrests whenever we come across them. Today, we have another very interesting DWI case to share with you.
Another unusual DWI
A man from Kentucky was recently arrested for an unusual crime, specifically DWI on a horse.
The sheriff’s deputies of Jessamine County stated that this crime was a first for them, although the man charged in this particular case expressed that he was just as shocked. He had no idea that one could be arrested for what he did.
The 55-year-old was trail riding with a few friends near his home when he stopped to take a break. The man, a diabetic, claims he needed to stop and eat crackers in order to lower his sugar levels. It was then that the deputy arrived, telling the man to get off his horse.
The man admitted to drinking a few beers. Although he said he doesn’t normally drink, he explained that they were celebrating his son’s birthday. He further explained that he was not drunk and that the diabetes made him light-headed, causing him to stagger as he got off the horse.
The deputy was not supposed to arrest the man until he began to stagger. It was at that point that the deputy placed the man under arrest and brought him to jail.
The arrest citation determined that the man’s blood alcohol level was twice the legal limit. According to the arresting deputy, a bag of marijuana and a package of rolling papers were found upon searching the man’s pockets. There were also several beers in the man’s bag and a mason jar identified as moonshine.
The chief deputy at the Jessamine County Sheriff’s Office stated that this was a very unique case, as the man could have swerved into a car and caused danger to himself and to others.
The man was charged with non-motor vehicle DWI, as well as possession of drug paraphernalia and marijuana. He will answer to the charges in two weeks.
In Kentucky, the law prohibits the operation of a non-motorized vehicle under the influence of substances or intoxicants that may impair an individual’s ability to drive. Non-motorized vehicles include bicycles and skateboards, among others.
Non-vehicular DWI in Minnesota
While some state laws explicitly exclude animal-powered modes of transportation under the definition of a “vehicle,” Minnesota laws are not specific on this subject matter.
Minnesota DWI is defined as operating, driving, or being in physical control of a motor vehicle while under the influence. The state’s DUI statute also specifically defines a motor vehicle as those self-propelled or propelled by electric power acquired from trolley wires overhead. Although off-road recreational vehicles and motorboats in operation are considered motor vehicles, those moved solely and exclusively by human power are not.
In summary, animal-powered vehicles are not specifically excluded in Minnesota’s DUI laws, but, in the above case, due to the simple fact that a horse has no motor which would make it “self-propelled”, it could not be defined as a motor vehicle under the Minnesota DWI statute.