Minnesota man’s specific felony DUI marks a first in the state

As of July 1 in Minnesota, there is a new illegal drug in the state. It’s a synthetic drug, sold as “bath salts” that mimics the physical effects of other already illegal drugs such as marijuana and LSD. The substance has been outlawed in Minnesota and throughout the county because of the reported dangers it poses to users.

According to a Rosemount police officer, one of those dangers is the potential for driving under the influence. His fear was validated on Sunday, when he arrested a 46-year-old driver for a felony DUI. The driver was not under the influence of alcohol. He passed a breath test. He still faces the serious charges.

How can that be so? Authorities report that the defendant admitted after being pulled over that he was under the influence of bath salts. The synthetic drug allegedly made him jittery but mentally slow when responding to the officer. This was the first time in Minnesota that a driver has been arrested and charged with driving under the influence of a synthetic drug.

This might be the first case of this kind in the state, but for this particular defendant, this is not his first time dealing with DUI charges. The Star Tribune reports that he has been convicted of 10 prior DWIs. This time, he was legally pulled over because witnesses and police saw him veering his blue pickup truck on the night of the arrest.

Because this is the first case of its kind in Minnesota, we will post an update when there are new developments to the story.


Star Tribune: “Rochester driver charged with using synthetic drug,” Joy Powell, 6 Jul. 2011

Max Keller has won countless jury trial cases involving misdemeanors and felonies, sex crimes, and DWI’s. He is a member of the Minnesota Society for Criminal Justice, which only allows the top 50 criminal defense attorneys in the state as members. Max is a frequent speaker at CLE’s and is often asked for advice by other defense attorneys across Minnesota.

Years of Experience: Approx. 20 years
Minnesota Registration Status: Active
Bar & Court Admissions: State of Minnesota Minnesota State Court Minnesota Federal Court 8th Circuit Federal Court of Appeals State of Maryland

What to Do If You Have Been Charged with a Criminal Offense

Confidential informants may provide integral information to help build criminal investigations, but how reliable is that information when they are receiving payment for their services? To protect them, state law requires the identity of informants be kept confidential. For those facing criminal charges, however, this creates challenges in questioning the accuracy and validity of the information given at trial.
Stay calm and compose after getting accused of a crime but not charged in Minneapolis, MN. Do not discuss the facts of your case with anyone, including your relatives and family members. Hire a criminal defense attorney with a demonstrated record of winning cases like yours. Your attorney will discuss your rights, guide you on how to cooperate with law enforcement within the legal boundaries, and build a solid defense strategy to fight the charges you could face in the future.
Expungement and sealing of records in Minnesota affect how your criminal history appears to government agencies and the public. The main difference between the two legal actions is that expungement permanently removes past arrests, criminal charges, or convictions from private and public databases, while sealing hides the criminal record from the public. Courts, government entities, and law enforcement agencies can access sealed criminal records.