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Asiento asignado por el Registro Nacional de Asociaciones Español: Grupo 1º, Sección 1ª, Numero 600121 - NIF: G76556646 ...

Montana Drugged Driving

In Montana, a person is guilty of DUI if he or she is driving while under the influence of (1) a dangerous drug, (2) any other drug, OR (3) alcohol and any dangerous or other drug. Mont. Code Ann. §§61-8-401(1)(b)-(d) (West 2009).

Implied Consent

  • A person who operates or is in actual physical control of a vehicle upon ways of this state open to the public is considered to have given consent to a test or tests of the person's blood or breath for the purpose of determining any measured amount or detected presence of alcohol or drugs in the person's body. Id. § 61-8-402(1).

  • If an arrested person refuses to submit to one or more tests requested and designated by the officer, the refused test or tests may not be given, but the officer shall, on behalf of the department, immediately seize the person's driver's license. Id. § 61-8-402(2).

  • Upon a first refusal, a suspension of 6 months with no provision for a restricted probationary license; upon a second or subsequent refusal within 5 years of a previous refusal, as determined from the records of the department, a suspension of 1 year with no provision for a restricted probationary license. Id. § 61-8-402(6).

  • If the person under arrest refuses to submit to one or more tests as provided in this section, proof of refusal is admissible in any criminal action or proceeding arising out of acts alleged to have been committed. The trier of fact may infer from the refusal that the person was under the influence. The inference is rebuttable. Id. § 61-8-404(2).

Penalties

  • First offense – imprisonment for not less than 24 hours, nor more than 6 months; fine of not less than $300, nor more than $1,000; first 24 hours of imprisonment must be served Id. § 61-8-714(1).
    NOTE: If any passenger(s) in the vehicle are under 16 years of age, person convicted will be punished by imprisonment not less than 48 consecutive hours, nor more than 12 months; and fined not less than $600, nor more than $2,000. Id. § 61-8-714(1).

  • Second offense - imprisoned not less than 7 days, nor more than 6 months, and fined not less than $600, nor more than $1,000; first 48 hours of imprisonment must be served consecutively; vehicle may be subject to seizure. Id. § 61-8-714(2); Id. § 61-8-442(2)(b).
    NOTE: If any passenger(s) in the vehicle are under 16 years of age, person convicted will be punished by imprisonment for not less than 14 days, nor more than 12 months; and fined not less than $1,200, nor more than $2,000. Id. § 61-8-714(2).

  • Third offense - imprisoned not less than 30 days, nor more than 1 year; fine of not less than $1000, nor more than $5,000; first 48 hours of imprisonment must be served and served consecutively. Id. §6 1-8-714(3).
    NOTE: If any passenger(s) in the vehicle are under 16 years of age, person convicted will be punished by imprisonment for not less than 60 days, nor more than 12 months; and fined not less than $2,000, nor more than $10,000. Id.

Other Penalties & Penalty Enhancers

  • Completion of a chemical dependency treatment program may be required. Id. § 61-8-714(1).

  • Once convicted, offender may be restricted to driving only a motor vehicle equipped with a functioning ignition interlock deviceduring the probationary period. Id. § 61-8-442(1).

Sobriety Checkpoints

In Montana, checkpoints are authorized by statute.

  • Checkpoints are conducted under the authority of a statute which allows 'safety spot checks,' although statute makes no specific reference to sobriety checkpoints. Id. § 46-5-501.

Case Law

State v. Hilgendorf, 2009 MT 158 2009) – Officer had probable cause to stop vehicle based on vehicle's abrupt takeoff as officer approached and fact that occupants were moving around inside as if they were trying to conceal something.

State v. Nobach, 46 P.3d 618 (2002) -- Arresting officer must be sufficiently knowledgeable about effects of drug consumption on person's ability to drive safely in order to offer testimony.

Foreman v. Minnie, 211 Mont. 441 (1984) -- Court found that drug paraphernalia that was found in the vehicle tends to show defendant was actively consuming controlled substances within a few days of the accident. 

Montana Medical Marijuana

SUMMARY: Sixty-two percent of voters approved Initiative 148 on November 2, 2004. The law took effect that same day. It removes state-level criminal penalties on the use, possession and cultivation of marijuana by patients who possess written documentation from their physicians authorizing the medical use of marijuana. Patients diagnosed with the following illnesses are afforded legal protection under this act: cachexia or wasting syndrome; severe or chronic pain; severe nausea; seizures, including but not limited to seizures caused by epilepsy; or severe or persistent muscle spasms, including but not limited to spasms caused by multiple sclerosis or Crohn's disease. Patients (or their primary caregivers) may possess no more than six marijuana plants. The law establishes a confidential state-run patient registry that issues identification cards to qualifying patients.

Valid medical marijuana registry cards from other medical marijuana states are recognized in this state, so long as the cardholder is in compliance with the possession limits imposed on cardholders in this state.

RECIPROCITY: Yes. Authorizes qualifying patient with registry identification card (or its equivalent) to engage in the medical use of marijuana. Also authorizes a person to assist with a qualifying patient’s medical use of marijuana. Mont. Code Ann. §50-46-201(8) (2009).

AMENDMENTS: Yes

Senate Bill 423, which became law on May 14, 2011, amends the state's medical marijuana law. The act is due to go into effect on July 1, 2011. Among the changes mandated by this act:

  • Chronic pain patients will face more stringent requirements to qualify under the law, and in some cases may require a recommendation from two separate physicians;

  • Patients found guilty of marijuana DUI will have their medical marijuana privileges revoked;

  • Advising physicians will be reported to the Board of Medical Examiners if they recommend for more than 25 patients per year; Physician will be responsible for the costs of this investigation;

  • Caregivers may accept no monetary compensation for providing cannabis to qualified patients.

A comprehensive summary of the primary provisions of SB 423 may be found here. Full text of the measure is online here.

Several provisions of SB 423 are presently being litigated in court.

MEDICAL MARIJUANA STATUTES: Montana Medical Marijuana Act, Mont. Code Ann. §§ 50-46-1 to 50-46-2 (2007).

CONTACT INFORMATION: www.dphhs.mt.gov/medicalmarijuana/ 

Montana Penalties


Incarceration


Fine

Possession

60 g or less (first offense)

misdemeanor

6 months

$100 - $500

60 g or less (subsequent offense)

felony

3 years

$1,000

More than 60 g

felony

20 years

$50,000

Cultivation

1 lb or less

felony

10 years

$50,000

More than 1 lb (or more than 30 plants)

felony

2 year MMS* - life

$50,000

Subsequent offenses

felony

double penalty

double penalty

*Mandatory minimum sentence.

Sale

Any amount

felony

1 year - life

$50,000

To a minor

felony

additional 2 years - life

$50,000

Within 1,000 feet of school**

felony

additional 3 years - life

$50,000

** That the person did not know the distance to a school may not be brought as a defense in court.
An affirmative defense may be raised if the conduct took place entirely within a private residence, and that no person under 17 years of age was present in the private residence at any time during the commission of the offense.

Miscellaneous (paraphernalia, license suspensions, drug tax stamps, etc...)

Paraphernalia possession or sale

misdemeanor

6 months

$500

Any conviction requires dangerous drug information course.
Possible alternative sentencing instead of incarceration.

 

Details

 

Possession of 60 grams or less of marijuana is a misdemeanor, punishable by up to six months in jail and a fine of $100 - $500 for the first conviction. For subsequent convictions the penalties increase to up to three years in prison and a fine up to $1,000. Possession of greater than 60 grams carries a sentence of up to 20 years in prison and a fine up to $50,000.

Production or manufacture of one pound or less of marijuana is punishable by up to 10 years in jail and a fine up to $50,000. For amounts greater than one pound or more than 30 plants, the penalty includes a two-year mandatory minimum sentence to life in prison and a fine up to $50,000. Subsequent convictions can double the possible sentence.

Sale or distribution of marijuana carries a penalty of 1 year - life in prison and a fine up to $50,000. Sale to a minor carries an additional penalty of 2 years - life in prison and a fine up to $50,000. Any sale within 1,000 feet of a school also adds an additional 3 years - life in prison and a fine up to $50,000.

All dangerous drug convictions require the offender to attend a dangerous drug information course. There is also the possibility of alternative sentencing such as fines, drug treatment, community service or probation if the court feels that incarceration is not warranted.

The penalty for possession or sale of paraphernalia is up to six months in jail and a fine up to $500.

 



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