Drug and Alcohol Laws

ALCOHOL LAWS

Local Laws: The City of Minneapolis Chapter §370.40 states that “No person under the age of twenty-one (21) years shall consume or have in his or her possession, at any place other than the household of the person’s parent or guardian, any liquor or beer with intent to consume the same, and possession thereof shall be prima facie evidence of intent to unlawfully consume the same.” In addition, the city has an ordinance prohibiting the consumption or possession of an open container containing an alcoholic beverage in any public place or on private property without the owner’s permission.

State Laws: Minnesota has many laws that regulate and control the use and abuse of alcohol. In addition to Driving While Impaired (DWI) laws, Minnesota has laws regulating the sale, purchase, possession, and consumption of alcohol.

  • Kevin’s Law increases criminal penalties on providers from a gross misdemeanor to a felony in certain cases. It is a felony for a person (other than a licensed retailer of alcoholic beverages, a bottle club permit holder, a municipal liquor store) to sell, barter, furnish, or give alcoholic beverages to a person under 21 years of age if that person becomes intoxicated and causes or suffers death or great bodily harm as a result of the intoxication.
  • Driving While Impaired (DWI) Laws: Minnesota has one of the most comprehensive DWI statutes in the nation. If an individual in Minnesota drives, operates, or is in physical control of a vehicle, on land or upon water while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, possible sentences include revocation of driving privileges, fines, imprisonment and/or participation in rehabilitation programs.
  • DWI is defined in terms of impaired ability to drive safely. It is not synonymous with an alcohol concentration of “0.08 or more.” On the contrary, an alcohol concentration of “0.04 or more” is relevant evidence of whether or not the person is under the influence of alcohol. Accordingly, it cannot be assumed that it is “legal” to drive so long as one remains below the 0.08 line. DWI also means the presence of any amount of certain controlled substances in the driver’s body. The Implied Consent statute provides that by driving a motor vehicle in Minnesota, a person implicitly consents to submit to testing for intoxication. If testing is refused, your right to drive will be revoked for a minimum of one year. However, whether or not you take the test, you may still be subject to criminal prosecution for an alcohol or controlled substance-related driving offense which has its own license revocation provision.
  • Driver’s License Suspension if Illegal Purchase or Consumption of Alcohol – Not a Drop Law: The Commissioner of Public Safety shall impose a 90-day suspension of driving privileges of any person(s) a) who is under the age of 21 years and is convicted of purchasing or attempting to purchase an alcoholic beverage if the person used a driver’s license, permit, or MN identification card in making the purchase or attempted purchase or b) who lends a driver’s license to someone under 21 to use to purchase alcoholic beverages.
  • Consumption and Possession if under 21: It is a misdemeanor for any person under the age of 21 to consume any alcoholic beverage unless that person is in his parent’s/guardian’s home and with their permission. A minimum fine of $100 must be assessed against a person under the age of 21 who consumes alcohol. State law provides that it is a misdemeanor if a person under the age of 21 consumes alcohol, attempts to purchase alcohol, possesses alcohol with intent to consume it, enters a licensed establishment or municipal liquor store for the purpose of purchasing or being served alcohol or misrepresents her or his age. Misdemeanors are punishable by imprisonment for up to 90 days and/or a $1000 fine.

DRUG LAWS

Minnesota State Law: Minnesota law covers a wide range of drug offenses, including the sale or possession of various types of drugs. Penalties are harsher for sale than possession. Crimes and penalties can change with each legislative session. For information on Minnesota laws related to controlled substances, go to https://www.revisor.mn.gov/statutes/?id=152. Following is a list of the penalties that can result from the unlawful sale or possession of certain drugs:

  Sale Possession Penalty

First Degree

10+ grams of cocaine, heroin, or methamphetamine, 50+ grams of narcotic drugs, 50+ kilos marijuana, 25+ kilos of marijuana in a school, park, or public housing zone. 25+ grams cocaine, 500+ grams of other narcotic drug, 500+ doses hallucinogen, 100+ kilos marijuana. 0-30 years and/or up to $1 million fine; 4 year minimum if prior drug felony; up to $1 million fine, imprisonment 86 to 30% months.
 

Second Degree

3+ grams of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine; 10+ grams of other narcotic drugs, any amount of cocaine, heroin, or narcotic drug, any narcotic drug to a person under 18 or employment of a person under 18 to sell the same. 6+ grams of cocaine, heroin or methamphetamine , 50+ grams of other narcotic drugs, 50+ kilos marijuana 0-25 years and/or up to $500,000 fine, 3 year minimum if prior drug felony, imprisonment 48 to 108 months.
 

Third Degree

Any amount of cocaine, heroin, or other narcotic drug, sale of any Schedule I, II, or III drug (except a Schedule I or II narcotic drug) to a person under 18 or employment of a person under 18 to sell the same. Possession: 3+ grams of cocaine, heroin, or methamphetamine, meth in a school or park zone, public housing 0-20 years and/or up to $250,000 fine, 2 year minimum if prior drug felony, probation 21-30 months, imprisonment 34-65 months.

Fourth Degree

Sale of any amount of cocaine, heroin, methamphetamine or other drug (except marijuana), any amount of marijuana in a school, park, or public housing zone; any Schedule IV or V drug to a person under 18 or conspiracy with or employment of a person under 18 to sell the same. 10+ dosage units of phencyclidine or hallucinogen Penalty: 0-15 years and/or up to $100,000 fine, 1 year minimum, probation 12-21 months, imprisonment 25-41 months.

Fifth Degree

Any amount of marijuana or any Schedule IV drug. Possession of any Schedule I, II, III, or IV drug; any prescription drug obtained through false pretenses or forgery 0-5 years and/or up to $10,000 fine, probation to 12-19 months, imprisonment to 21 months.

Federal Laws: In addition to state penalties, federal laws provide for the

  • Forfeiture of personal and real property used to possess or to facilitate possession of a controlled substance;
  • Forfeiture of vehicles, boats, aircraft or other conveyances to transport or conceal a controlled substance;
  • Civil fine up to $10,000;
  • Denial of Federal benefits such as student loans, grants, and professional licenses;
  • Ineligibility to receive or purchase a firearm; and
  • Revocation of certain Federal licenses and benefits, such as public housing tenancy.

Federal Penalties: For more information, connect to http://www.justice.gov/dea/pubs/csa.html

  First offense Second offense
Possession of 50+ grams of methamphetamine, 1 kilo or more heroin mixture, 50 grams+ grams of cocaine base, 100+ grams of PCP, 10+ grams of LSD. 10 years to life, 10-year mandatory minimum, up to $4 million fine. 20 years to life, 20-year mandatory minimum; if death or serious injury, not less than life; up to $8 million fine individual.
Possession of 5-49 grams of methamphetamine, cocaine base, 1-9 grams LSD, 10-99 grams PCP. Penalties range from 5-40 years, 5-year mandatory minimum, up to $2 million fine individual. 10 years to life, 10-year mandatory minimum, up to $4 million fine individual; $10 million other than individual.
Possession of any amount of other Schedule I or Schedule II Controlled Substances: Rohypnol, GHB, Ecstasy, Narcotic Drugs. 0-20 years, up to $1 million fine. 0-30 years, up to $2 million fine individual, $10 million other than individual.

Federal law provides other penalties for possession of Schedule III, Schedule IV, and Schedule V Controlled Substances.

Section VII: Health Risks

In compliance with the Drug Free Schools and Communities Act of 1989 (Public Law 101-226) the College has adopted a program to prevent the unlawful possession, use and distribution of illicit drugs and alcohol by members of the college community. In compliance with this requirement, information below describes the various health risks associated with alcohol abuse and the use of specific types of drugs. It is not intended to be an exhaustive or complete statement of all the possible health consequences of substance abuse.

Alcohol Use and Abuse Alcohol acts as a central nervous system depressant. Health risks include

  • Malnutrition
  • Lowered resistance to disease
  • Irreversible brain or nervous system damage
  • Gastrointestinal irritation
  • Damage to liver, heart, and pancreas
  • Addiction/alcoholism
  • Coma
  • Death from overdose, injury or accident

Very high doses cause respiratory distress and death. If combined with other depressants of the central nervous system, much lower doses of alcohol can be fatal.

Cocaine/Crack Cocaine stimulates the central nervous system. Crack or freebase rock is a purified form of cocaine that is smoked. Smoking crack provides intensified cocaine effects because higher doses of the drug reach the brain very quickly. Crack is far more addictive than heroin or barbiturates. Continued use can produce violent behavior and psychotic states similar to schizophrenia.

Health risks include

  • Malnutrition
  • Respiratory problems
  • Addiction
  • Stroke
  • Liver problems
  • Seizures
  • Heart and respiratory failure
  • Psychosis
  • Coma
  • Convulsions
  • Sexual dysfunction
Marijuana The physical effects of marijuana include increased heart rate, bloodshot eyes, a dry mouth and throat, and increased appetite. It may impair short-term memory and comprehension, alter sense of time and reduce ability to perform tasks requiring concentration and coordination, such as driving a car. When marijuana contains 2 percent THC, it can cause severe psychological damage, including paranoia and psychosis. Since the early 1980’s, most marijuana has contained from 4 to 6 percent THC – two or three times the amount capable of causing serious damage.

Because users often inhale the unfiltered smoke deeply and then hold it in their lungs as long as possible, marijuana is damaging to the lungs and pulmonary system. Marijuana smoke contains more cancer causing agents than tobacco smoke.

Steroids Steroids are illegal to possess without a prescription from a licensed physician. They are prescribed for specific medical conditions.

Possible signs of use/abuse: sudden increase in muscle and weight; increase in aggression and combativeness; violence; hallucinations; depression; jaundice; purple or red spots on body, inside mouth, or nose; swelling of feet or lower legs; tremors; and bad breath.

Health risks include, but are not limited to

  • High blood pressure
  • Liver and kidney damage
  • Heart disease
  • Increased risk of injury to ligaments and tendons
  • Bowel and urinary problems
  • Gallstones and kidney stones
  • Liver cancer
Narcotics Narcotics such as heroin, codeine and morphine initially produce a feeling of euphoria that often is followed by drowsiness, nausea and vomiting. Users also may experience constricted pupils, watery eyes and itching. An overdose may produce slow and shallow breathing, clammy skin, convulsions, coma and possible death. Narcotics are extremely addictive.
Amphetamines/Other Stimulants Amphetamines (speed, uppers), methamphetamines and other stimulants can cause increased heart and respiratory rate, elevated blood pressure, dilated pupils and decreased appetite. In addition, users may experience sweating, headache, bad breath, blurred vision, dizziness, sleeplessness, and anxiety. Extremely high doses can cause a rapid or irregular heartbeat, tremors, loss of coordination, and even physical collapse. In addition to the physical effects, users report feeling restless, anxious and moody. People who use large amounts of amphetamines over a long period of time can develop an amphetamine psychosis that includes hallucinations, delusions and paranoia.
Barbiturates/Other Depressants Barbiturates (downers), methaqualone (quaaludes), tranquilizers (valium and Rohypnol) and other depressants have many of the same effects as alcohol. Small or prescribed doses can produce calmness and relaxed muscles, but larger doses can cause slurred speech, staggering and altered perception. Very large doses can cause respiratory depression, coma and death. The combination of depressants and alcohol can multiply the effects of the drugs, thereby multiplying the risks. Use can also cause liver damage, convulsions, and coma.
Hallucinogens Hallucinogens are psychedelic, mind-altering drugs that affect a person’s perceptions, feelings, thinking, and self-awareness. Use causes

  • Increased body temperature, heart rate and blood pressure
  • Sweating
  • Loss of appetite
  • Sleeplessness
  • Tremors
  • Confusion, paranoia, and sometimes violence.

Because PCP blocks pain receptors, violent PCP episodes may result in self-inflicted injuries. Large doses may produce convulsions and coma, as well as heart and lung failure. Psychological reactions may include panic, confusion, suspicion, anxiety and loss of control. Delayed effects or flashbacks can occur even after use has ceased.

Inhalants The immediate negative effects of inhalants (laughing gas, whippets) include nausea, sneezing, coughing, nosebleeds, fatigue, and lack of coordination and loss of appetite.

  • Solvents and aerosol sprays also decrease heart and respiratory rates and impair judgment.
  • Long-term use may result in hepatitis or brain damage. Deeply inhaling the vapors or using large amounts over a short period of time may result in disorientation, violent behavior, unconsciousness, or death.
  • High concentrations of inhalants can cause suffocation by displacing the oxygen in the lungs or by depressing the central nervous system to the point that breathing stops

Section VIII: Assistance for Alcohol and Other Drug Issues

The Center for Counseling and Health Promotion (612-330-1707) provides professional help and referral for students concerned about alcohol or drug use. A list of locally available sources for assistance and counseling is available from Counseling and Health Promotion and on their website at: www.augsburg.edu/cchp.

Section IX: Freedom to Breathe Act (effective October 1, 2007)

This legislation covers all workplaces, with a few narrow exemptions. Key highlights of the Freedom to Breathe Act:

  • All Minnesota workers are protected from secondhand smoke, including bar and restaurant workers;
  • Smoking is prohibited in bars, restaurants, private clubs and other workplaces;
  • Smoking is allowed on outdoor patios; local governments retain control to further regulate outdoor smoking;
  • Other minor exemptions: indoor smoking is permitted for scientific studies, theatrical productions (by actors only) and traditional American Indian ceremonies; in hotel rooms, tobacco shops, disabled veterans rest camp in Washington County, locked psychiatric units; and on family farms.