Amendment to Title 7 VSA §658: SALE OR FURNISHING TO MINORS; ENABLING CONSUMPTION BY MINORS; MINORS CAUSING DEATH OR SERIOUS BODILY INJURY (June 26, 2000)
Another change this past legislative session was an amendment to Title 7 VSA §658. The following are the changes that have been made:
A]* No person*[ , licensee or otherwise,]* shall *[ not]*:
(1) sell or furnish malt or vinous beverages or spirituous liquors to a person under the age of 21; or
(2) knowingly enable the consumption of malt or vinous beverages or spirituous liquors by a person under the age of 21.
(c) A person who violates subsection (a) of this section shall be fined not less than $500.00 nor more than $2,000.00 or imprisoned not more than two years, or both. However, an employee of a second class licensee, who in the course of employment violates subdivision (a)(1) of this section during a compliance check conducted by a law enforcement officer as defined in 20 V.S.A. §2358:
(1) shall be assessed a civil penalty of not more than $100.00 for the first violation, and a civil penalty of not less than $100.00 nor more than $500.00 for a second violation that occurs more than one year after the first violation.
(2) shall be subject to the criminal penalties provided in this subsection for a second violation within a year of the first violation, and for a third or subsequent violation within three years of the first violation.
(3) may plead as an affirmative defense that:
(A) the purchaser exhibited and the employee carefully viewed photographic identification that complied with section 602 of this title and indicated the purchaser to be 21 or older; and
(B) an ordinary prudent person would believe the purchaser to be of legal age to make the purchase; and
(C) the sale was made in good faith, based upon the reasonable belief that the purchaser was of legal age to purchase alcoholic beverages.
d) A person who violates subsection (a) of this section, where the person under the age of 21, while operating a motor vehicle on a public highway causes death or serious bodily injury to himself or herself or to another person as a result of the violation, shall be imprisoned not more than five years or fined not more than $10,000.00, or both. (Amended 1981, No. 246 (Adj. Sess.), § 3; 1997, No. 117 (Adj. Sess.), § 5.)