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'Segwaying While Intoxicated' Not a Crime, Says Minn. Court of Appeals

You drive your Segway scooter to the local bar. You drink. You get drunk. It gets to be last call, and perhaps the bar owner plays the song "Closing Time" ("You don't have to go home but you can't stay here") as he pushes you out the door. Can you drive your Segway home despite being drunk beyond the legal limit to operate a motor vehicle? In Minnesota, at least, the answer is ... heck, yes!

That issue was decided this week by the Minnesota Court of Appeals in the state's case against Mark Greenman, who was rolling home on his Segway following a pool tournament at the Inn Kahoots bar last February. The Star Tribune reports that after Greenman veered into the road, police pulled him over (is that even the right phrase for a Segway stop?) and charged him with DWI after he blew a 0.19 on his breath test. Greenman said he was "incredulous" about being charged because this was not his first brush with Segway DWIs -- he'd already "beaten an identical charge two years earlier," the Star Tribune reports.

The Minnesota Court of Appeals ruled Tuesday that the latest DWI charge against Greenman could not stand because Segways are not "motor vehicles" under state drunken-driving laws. This holding comes too late, however, for others in Minnesota who have pleaded guilty in the past for drunk driving on things such as a "motorized recliner chair," a Zamboni and riding lawn mowers.

Sgt. Jason Nelson, Medina's acting police chief, told the Star Tribune that the holding does not have the city in fear of "an influx of drunken Segway riders" given that "they're not that easy to drive sober."

Posted by Bruce Carton on January 25, 2013 at 04:14 PM | Permalink | Comments (4)

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