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Drunk Scooter Driving Will Result in Criminal Charges, Not Administrative License Action

June 16, 2017

On June 13, 2017, the Missouri Court of Appeals, Western District, in B. C. McMillin v. Director of Revenue, No. WD79818, ruled that in a civil driver license suspension case where the driver is operating a scooter under the influence of alcohol, Section 302.505 is not applicable. It only applies to "motor vehicle" as defined by Section 302.010(10).

Since the parties stipulated as to the existence of probable cause for the underlying arrest and McMillin's BAC, "the only issue before [the Court] is whether the motorized bicycle was a motor vehicle as contemplated by Chapter 302." Section 302.010(10) defines a "motor vehicle" as "any self-propelled vehicle...except motorized bicycles, as defined in [S]ection 307.180."

The Director argued that for purposes of a civil driver license suspension case, the Court should consider a motorized bicycle as a "motor vehicle" since an individual can be charged criminally with a DWI for operating a motorized bicycle under the influence of alcohol; and, therefore, it would be inconsistent to rule that a motorized bicycle is not a "motor vehicle" under Chapter 302. However, as the Court pointed out, the DWI statute "Chapter 577, unlike Chapter 302, does not include a definition of 'motor vehicle.' Thus, driving a motorized bicycle with a blood alcohol concentration in excess of .08% will support a criminal conviction for driving while intoxicated."

Driving drunk on your scooter won't result in your license being suspended or revoked in civil court; however, a criminal conviction of the related DWI will result in a suspension or revocation of your driving privileges. To learn more about penalties for a DWI in Missouri here.

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