S. Dakota OKs Drunken Horse Riding, Biking
PIERRE, SD-February 16, 2006 -- South Dakota bar owners may want to install hitching posts and bike racks out front.
Gov. Mike Rounds announced Wednesday that he has signed a bill into law exempting horses and bikes from drunken driving laws. It goes into effect July 1.
Legislators offered the so-called "beer-for-your-horses" bill as part of an effort to update the criminal code.
"If I'm going down the road with my family, I'd much prefer to have a drunk on a Schwinn coming at me than a drunk in a Chevy," said Sen. Lee Schoenbeck, R-Watertown.
Charging intoxicated horse and bike riders with drunken driving makes a joke of drunken driving laws, he said. People still could be charged with being a public safety hazard, a misdemeanor.
Sen. John Koskan, R-Wood, though, objected to the change. He said horses on highways can be dangerous, adding that prosecutors oppose the bill.
"Just because it's a horse doesn't mean it's safe to be out on the road," Koskan said.
(Copyright 2006 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.)
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