"We feel that the only way we're going to get at the drunk driving problem and the problem of people hurting each other while drunk is by crackdowns like this," said Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commissioner Carolyn Beck
"A good working definition of intoxication is the introduction of any substance into the body that impairs your mental or physical capacities," explained TABC Sgt. Allee.Can you say 'overly broad'? I hope the ACLU is contacting people nailed for this so that they can put a case together to get this law tossed out. I mean... under the above definition, I could be arrested for being in public after taking antihistamines (makes me groggy), or even drinking too many Mountain Dews (makes it hard for me to concentrate). This law is RIDICULOUS! And I bet we've got one, too.
I guess it's time to look into my local public drunkenness laws.
Wisconsin seems to have repealed the public drunkenness law sometime in the 70's. I think. Any lawyers out there that can tell me if I'm reading this properly?
¶12 Wis. Stat. § 51.45 was created by Chapter 198, Laws of1973 ("Ch. 198"). Ch. 198 originated as 1973 Assembly Bill 589. According to an analysis of 1973 Assembly Bill 589 by the
Legislative Reference Bureau ("LRB"):
This bill adapts the Uniform Alcoholism and Intoxication Treatment Act to Wisconsin law. Administered by the department of health and social services, the proposal changes the present policy of making public drunkenness a criminal offense and attempts to coordinate a comprehensive treatment program. (Emphasis added).
. . . .
The bill does not affect present laws against drunken driving and other offenses
committed under the influence of alcohol. (Emphasis added).
This analysis indicates that the legislature intended to establish treatment programs for alcoholics and intoxicated persons rather than to allow prosecution of them for public drunkenness.11 However, it also indicates that the legislature did not intend to change any additional criminal statutes other than those making public drunkenness a criminal