public drinking

Judge Rules That Cops Cannot Reliably Detect Beer by Sniffing

Forty ounces of beer, or freedom?

Brooklyn judge Noach Dear reached an anti-establishment conclusion on Thursday, rejecting the authority of NYPD officers to issue public drinking summonses based only on a sniff of a container’s contents. “While the arresting officer’s professional training and sense of smell may be sufficient to support his conclusion that defendant was drinking beer,” Dear wrote in a case involving a man who actually admitted carrying a cup with beer, “such does not support the conclusion that the beer contained more than one-half of one percent of alcohol by volume.”

In Dear’s court, cops who moonlight as pub dwellers need not drag a person into court based on a sniff. He would like to see the NYPD use a lab test, or basically stop issuing summonses for public drinking.

In other words, if you’re a Brooklyn resident who might get hauled before Judge Noach Dear’s bench on a public drinking violation, this is your opportunity to experiment with drinking on the street from pilsners, beer helmets, or any other preferred container.

Judge: Cops Can’t Reliably Sniff Out Beer