Anonymous
Anonymous asked in Food & DrinkBeer, Wine & Spirits · 7 years ago

Is it illegal to drive with open empty bottles of beer in your car?

Two nights ago I was on my way home from a night out with a few friends. I had drank a few that night but earlier in the day a few people were drinking in my back seat at half time of a game we were at. I didn't empty the beers out of my car and at 3 in the morning I got pulled over on my way home as the cop said I "swerved." He gave me a sobriety test and he said I passed and was fine to drive home but he gave me a $270 ticket for having open containers in my back seat. If I passed a sobriety test meaning I wasn't drunk doesn't that mean that the empty bottles in my back seat were basically just trash? Could I argue this in court to have this fee waived?

Update:

Everyone says that I am wrong, but what law have a broken according to this website. http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/free-books/... it says "partially removed" they contents were completely removed. Also back seat on the floor is completely out of my reach. Each container held zero alcohol. I know it sounds stupid but which law did I break?

9 Answers

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  • Best Answer

    In any place I have lived open container laws were enforced. I had open bottles from a day before when I was pulled over for speeding and got an open container citation to boot. You can always have your day in court but you are guilty so just save your time and pay the fine.

  • Jason
    Lv 5
    7 years ago

    You may still have a problem. Just because you have satisfied the Police by paying your fine, the Open Container violation will go on your DMV record, and may result in higher insurance rates. Other than that, you will most likely be fine, unless you are under 21 years of age. At that point, you have broken a different law because you are not allowed alcohol to begin with.

  • Andrea
    Lv 6
    7 years ago

    No, just pay the fine and learn your lesson.

    Open alcohol containers is a violation almost everywhere. Some places, even closed ones in reach of the driver are a violation.

    I expect if you go to court they'll increase the fine. The law doesn't allow for excuses. The law specifically states open containers of alcohol are prohibited.

    Bad idea to let people drink in your car, even if you are sober yourself.

  • RoyS
    Lv 7
    7 years ago

    Nope. They are open containers, and most states have laws against any open containers in the passenger compartment of a vehicle. It doesn't matter if they were there for a year; if a cop finds them, you can be cited.

    EDIT: Try taking a copy of that website into court and argue with the judge. Let us know how you make out.

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  • 7 years ago

    Nope, open containers aren't allowed anywhere except the trunk. Doesn't matter if their empty because who's to say you didn't just pour it out the window before you got stopped, not saying you did but still. Take the ticket and now you know not to do that anymore.

  • 3 years ago

    It has to have alcohol in the container not just an Oder but alcohol .05% or higher and be within your reach. I've won every defense case for this in Indiana the rest of these people are ignorant

  • Josh
    Lv 4
    7 years ago

    Dude, be thanking your stars he didn't run you in for DUI just because you had the containers in your car. How freaking stupid can you be. Take it as a lesson, pay the fine and be smarter in the future.

  • John W
    Lv 7
    7 years ago

    Yes, many jurisdictions it's illegal to have open bottles in your vehicle. There's no worming out of that ticket just cause you weren't drinking.

  • Bella
    Lv 7
    7 years ago

    No, you had open containers, it doesn't matter how long they'd been there, they shouldn't have been there in the first place.

    The open container law, d'uh

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