lt is a misdemeanor in Nevada to drive with an open container of alcohol or even to walk around in many places with an open container of alcohol. Note that having an open container of alcohol is an entirely separate crime from:
- the Nevada crime of driving under the influence of alcohol, or
- offenses related to Nevada public intoxication laws
Indeed, people can be cited for having an open container of alcohol in Nevada even if they have not been drinking at all. Typical penalties are fines but can possibly include up to 6 months in jail.
In this article our Las Vegas criminal defense attorneys answer frequently-asked-questions about Nevada's "open container" laws. Continue reading to learn more about the rules for driving or walking with open containers in Nevada, including the local laws in Las Vegas and Reno.
1) What is an "open container" of alcohol in Nevada?
The legal definition of an "open container" of alcohol is when the container has been opened or when the seal has been broken.1 Examples include:
- a bottle of liquor where the cap has been popped or unscrewed
- a bottle of wine that has been corked
- a can of beer where the tab has been opened
Note that an open container of alcohol can never be closed again: It is still considered "open" if the cap or cork was put back on the container.
Note that open containers do not include "beer-footballs" and plastic cups.2
2) Can a person keep an open container of alcohol in a car in Nevada?
Generally, it is unlawful throughout all of Nevada to have an open container of alcohol in car while on a road or highway.3 Though in Las Vegas, it is legal to keep open containers of alcohol in a vehicle's trunk. And if there is no trunk, it is legal to keep open containers in a glove compartment or utility compartment.4 Henderson criminal defense attorney Michael Becker illustrates these laws with an example:
Example: Daniel and his three friends go out to Mirage one night. Daniel is the designated driver. After dropping off his friends, Daniel is pulled over for a broken tail light. The cop then notices an open beer can in the backseat that belonged to one of his friends. The cop then cites Daniel for having an open container in his car.
In the above example, it does not matter that Daniel never drank out of the beer can. Nor does it matter that the alcohol is in the back seat out of reach of Daniel, or that Daniel did not realize the beer was in his car. Merely having an open container of alcohol in a car is a criminal offense in Nevada. Had the friend put the beer can in the trunk, then Daniel could have escaped prosecution.
Note that there are some exceptions in Nevada to this "no open container" rule, explained below in question 3.
3) When can a person keep or drink from an open container of alcohol in a vehicle in Nevada?
Nevada law permits people to have an open container of alcohol in the following types of vehicles:
- The living quarters of a house coach or house trailer;
- Cabs, limos, shuttles, or buses used primarily for the transportation of people for a fare. Las Vegas law mandates that limos must have a partition between the driver's seat and the passenger area of the car in order for passengers to lawfully have an open container.5
Note that in the above two circumstances, it is still illegal for the driver of the motor vehicle to be drinking or to be in possession or control of an open container of alcohol.6 Also note that the Las Vegas Monorail and Regional Transportation Commission (RTC) buses have a no drinking policy.
4) What are the penalties for having an open container of alcohol in a car in Nevada?
Unlawfully having an open container of alcohol in a car in Nevada is a misdemeanor.7 The penalty includes:
- up to 6 months in jail, and/or
- up to $1,000 in fines
In most cases, the judge will impose only fines and no jail. However, penalties can be as much as doubled if it occurred in a work zone.8
5) Can a person walk around on a public street holding an open container of alcohol in Las Vegas, Nevada?
It depends where the person is in Las Vegas, and where the alcohol came from. There are no state laws regulating whether pedestrians may hold open containers of alcohol, so local municipal codes set out the rules.
Incorporated Las Vegas (including Downtown Las Vegas):
Incorporated Las Vegas is a small area of Las Vegas that includes the Downtown area but does not include the Las Vegas Strip. It is illegal to have an open container of alcohol in the following four areas of incorporated Las Vegas:
- Upon the property or parking lot of a package store or other store licensed to sell alcohol in a sealed or corked container for the purpose of consumption off premises; or
- Within one thousand feet (1,000 ft) of a package store or other store licensed to sell alcohol in a sealed or corked container for the purpose of consumption off premises, with the exception of on residential property; or
- Upon property, other than residential property or property licensed for a special event, located within one thousand feet (1,000 ft) of a church, synagogue, public or private school, hospital, special care facility, withdrawal management facility or homeless shelter; or
- At any bus stop bench, bus stop shelter or at the Downtown Transportation Center.
Since it is unlawful to have an open container within 1,000 feet of a packaged liquor store in incorporated Las Vegas, virtually every sidewalk from the Fremont East District to Main Street is off limits for possessing an open container of packaged liquor.9 And on the Fremont Street Experience, it now is illegal to carry liquor in an open glass or aluminum container at all.10
Henderson criminal defense attorney Neil Shouse gives an example of how location is the determining factor of whether an open container law has been broken:
Example: Anna buys a bottle of beer from the Downtown Grand casino. She then begins walking home with the beer in hand. If she opens the can while still near Downtown, a cop could cite Anna for an open container because it is within 1,000 of a package store. But if she opens the can near her home, where there is nothing but other residential houses within 1,000 feet, she is breaking no law.
Since many people have no idea what types of businesses are within a 1,000 foot radius of them, it is recommended that people do not have open containers on city streets in incorporated Las Vegas. If they wait until they get home or are inside a casino or tavern, then they should be able to escape police citations.
Drinking in public in Downtown Las Vegas
Carrying alcohol in a plastic container on public streets in Downtown Las Vegas is legal if the drink was bought from one of the large casinos. These large casinos carry "tavern licenses," which permit its liquor to be taken off premises. However cops may not believe that the person bought the drink from a large casino and may cite him/her anyway, so patrons should keep the receipt as proof. (Some examples of these large casinos include Binion's, the El Cortez, and the Golden Nugget.)
Most of the bars and restaurants in Downtown have "tavern-limited" licenses, which means that the patrons may not take the liquor off the premises onto the street. So cops who see pedestrians leave a bar with a drink may cite them for leaving the premises.11 (Some examples of these Downtown Las Vegas bars include Insert Coin(s) and Vanguard.)
Unincorporated Clark County (including the Las Vegas Strip):
The rest of Clark County has slightly laxer open container restrictions than incorporated Las Vegas.12 In unincorporated Clark County, which includes the Las Vegas Strip, it is always illegal to have open containers of alcohol in the following three locations:
- Within one thousand feet (1,000 ft) of the store from which liquor, beer and wine was purchased in closed containers, except on residential property; or
- In any parking lot; or
- On the property or premises of the establishment from which the closed container of liquor, beer or wine was purchased.
Therefore there is no prohibition in unincorporated Clark County against having an open container in close proximity to a school, house of worship, or hospital.
With regard to public Clark County parks (such as Sunset Park), it is illegal to have an open container of alcohol in or on parking lots, playground areas, roadways, or swimming pools or at any youth athletic event. Otherwise, it may be legal to drink from non-glass open containers of alcohol in properly designated areas or when associated with county permitted events.13 Furthermore, operators of pedicabs may not permit open containers of alcohol in pedicabs.14
Drinking in public on the Strip
Generally, it is lawful to walk the Las Vegas Strip carrying alcohol in open containers of either:
plastic, or paper
But it is currently illegal to walk the Strip with a glass container irrespective of whether it holds an alcoholic beverage or not. The only time it is legal to carry a glass beverage is if the container is closed and in a paper or plastic bag with the receipt attached. And during special events such as New Year's Eve and Fourth of July, it is prohibited to possess aluminum beverage containers as well.15
6) What are the penalties for having an open container in Las Vegas, Nevada?
In incorporated Las Vegas (including Downtown), people suspected of illegally possessing an open container of alcohol are typically cited for a misdemeanor. The sentence is usually a $200 fine plus court costs.
In unincorporated Las Vegas (including the Strip), people suspected of illegally possessing an open container or alcohol are typically cited for a misdemeanor. The sentence can be up to $250 in fines and/or up to 30 days in jail, though judges typically do not impose jail for a first offense.16
7) What are the defenses to "open container" laws in Las Vegas, Nevada?
It is not uncommon for "open container" charges to be dismissed in Nevada because the police were mistaken about the location or type of container involved. Therefore three common defenses to Las Vegas "open container" charges include:
- The alcohol was not within 1,000 feet of a package store or other prohibited location;
- The container was not open; or
- The container did not contain alcohol
It is not a defense that the defendant was not personally drinking from the container. Las Vegas's open container laws pertain both to drinking from open containers as well as to possessing open containers.
8) What are Reno's laws for walking with open containers?
Reno law bans open containers on public streets, but there is one exception. During certain outdoor special events such as Hot August Nights, local authorities temporarily permit these areas to be considered "beer gardens." In a beer garden, drinking from open containers is legal.17
Cited for "open containers"? Call an attorney...
Have you been arrested for "driving with an open container" or cited for "walking with an open container" in Nevada? Then call our Las Vegas criminal defense attorneys for a free consultation at 702-DEFENSE (702-333-3673). We may be able to get the charge dismissed and keep your record clean.
For information on California open container laws | Vehicle Code Sections 23221 - 23229 VC, go to our article on California open container laws | Vehicle Code Sections 23221 - 23229 VC.
1NRS 484B.150 Drinking alcoholic beverage while driving motor vehicle unlawful; open container of alcoholic beverage; additional penalty for violation committed in work zone.
1. It is unlawful for a person to drink an alcoholic beverage while the person is driving or in actual physical control of a motor vehicle upon a highway.
2. Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, it is unlawful for a person to have an open container of an alcoholic beverage within the passenger area of a motor vehicle while the motor vehicle is upon a highway. This subsection does not apply to:
(a) The passenger area of a motor vehicle which is designed, maintained or used primarily for the transportation of persons for compensation; or
(b) The living quarters of a house coach or house trailer,
--> but does apply to the driver of such a motor vehicle who is in possession or control of an open container of an alcoholic beverage.
3. A person who violates any provision of this section may be subject to the additional penalty set forth in NRS 484B.130.
4. As used in this section:
(a) “Alcoholic beverage” has the meaning ascribed to it in NRS 202.015.
(b) “Open container” means a container which has been opened or the seal of which has been broken.
(c) “Passenger area” means that area of a vehicle which is designed for the seating of the driver or a passenger.
LVMC 11.14.050 Open containers—General.
Except as otherwise provided in LVMC 11.14.070, it is unlawful for any person, while in a motor vehicle on a highway or upon a premises to which the public has access, to knowingly possess any bottle, can or other receptacle containing any detectable amount of alcoholic beverage which has been opened or the seal broken, or the contents partially removed.
(Ord. 5864 § 2 (part), 2006)
CCC 12.35.020 Open containers unlawful in motor vehicles.
(A) It is unlawful for a person to have in his or her possession, or on his or her person, while in a motor vehicle upon a highway, any bottle, can or other receptacle containing any alcoholic beverage which has been opened, or a seal broken, or the contents of which have been partially removed.
(B) It is unlawful for the registered owner of any motor vehicle, or the driver if the registered owner is not then present in the vehicle, to keep in a motor vehicle when the motor vehicle is upon any highway, any bottle, can or other receptacle containing any alcoholic beverage which has been partially removed, unless the container is kept in the trunk of the vehicle or kept in some other area of the vehicle not normally occupied by the driver or passengers if the vehicle is not equipped with a trunk. A utility compartment or glove compartment shall be deemed to be within the area occupied by the driver and passengers.
(C) Subsections (A) and (B) of this section do not apply to a motor vehicle operated by a common carrier, taxicab, limousine, bus or other motor vehicle used to carry passengers for furtherance of commercial enterprise, or the living quarters of a motorhome, housecar or camper.
(D) "Alcoholic beverage," as used in this section, means beer, wine, spirits and alcohol, as those products are defined in Clark County Code Section 8.20.020 and every liquid containing one-half of one percent or more of alcohol by volume which is used for beverage purposes.
(E) "Highway," as used in this section, means the entire width between the boundary lines of every way dedicated to a public authority when any part of the way is open to the use of the public for purposes of vehicular traffic, whether or not the public authority is maintaining the way.
(Ord. 1209 § 1, 1990)
4 LVMC 11.14.060 Open containers—Storage.
(A) Except as otherwise provided in Subsection (B) of this Section or in LVMC 11.14.070, it is unlawful for the registered owner of any motor vehicle, or the driver if the registered owner is not then present in the vehicle, to keep in that vehicle, when it is upon any highway, any bottle, can or other receptacle containing any detectable amount of alcoholic beverage which has been opened or the seal broken, or the contents partially removed.
(B) The prohibition contained in Subsection (A) of this Section does not apply if the receptacle is kept in the trunk of the vehicle or, if the vehicle is not equipped with a trunk, in some other area of the vehicle not normally occupied by the driver or passengers. For purposes of the preceding sentence, a utility compartment or glove compartment shall be deemed to be within the area normally occupied by the driver and passengers.
(Ord. 5864 § 2 (part), 2006)
5LVMC 11.14.070 Open containers—Exceptions. The provisions of LVMC 11.14.050 and 11.14.060 do not apply to:
(A) A motor vehicle operated by a common carrier or used to carry passengers for furtherance of a commercial enterprise;
(B) A motor vehicle that is operated as part of a duly licensed limousine service and that has a partition between the driver's seat and the passenger seats; or
(C) The living quarters of a motor home, camper or recreational vehicle, as those terms are defined in NRS Chapter 482.
(Ord. 5864 § 2 (part), 2006)
8NRS 484B.130 Double penalty for certain traffic violations committed in work zones; exception in certain temporary traffic control zones.
1. Except as otherwise provided in subsections 2 and 6, a person who is convicted of a violation of a speed limit, or of NRS 484B.150, 484B.163, 484B.165, 484B.200 to 484B.217, inclusive, 484B.223, 484B.227,484B.300, 484B.303, 484B.317, 484B.320, 484B.327, 484B.330, 484B.403, 484B.587, 484B.600, 484B.603, 484B.650, 484B.653, 484B.657, 484C.110 or 484C.120, that occurred:
(a) In an area designated as a temporary traffic control zone; and
(b) At a time when the workers who are performing construction, maintenance or repair of the highway or other work are present, or when the effects of the act may be aggravated because of the condition of the highway caused by construction, maintenance or repair, including, without limitation, reduction in lane width, reduction in the number of lanes, shifting of lanes from the designated alignment and uneven or temporary surfaces, including, without limitation, modifications to road beds, cement-treated bases, chip seals and other similar conditions,
--> shall be punished by imprisonment or by a fine, or both, for a term or an amount equal to and in addition to the term of imprisonment or amount of the fine, or both, that the court imposes for the primary offense. Any term of imprisonment imposed pursuant to this subsection runs consecutively with the sentence prescribed by the court for the crime. This subsection does not create a separate offense, but provides an additional penalty for the primary offense, whose imposition is contingent upon the finding of the prescribed fact.
2. The additional penalty imposed pursuant to subsection 1 must not exceed a total of $1,000, 6 months of imprisonment or 120 hours of community service.
3. Except as otherwise provided in subsection 5, a governmental entity that designates an area or authorizes the designation of an area as a temporary traffic control zone in which construction, maintenance or repair of a highway or other work is conducted, or the person with whom the governmental entity contracts to provide such service, shall cause to be erected:
(a) A sign located before the beginning of such an area stating “DOUBLE PENALTIES IN WORK ZONES” to indicate a double penalty may be imposed pursuant to this section;
(b) A sign to mark the beginning of the temporary traffic control zone; and
(c) A sign to mark the end of the temporary traffic control zone.
4. A person who otherwise would be subject to an additional penalty pursuant to this section is not relieved of any criminal liability because signs are not erected as required by subsection 3 if the violation results in injury to any person performing highway construction or maintenance or other work in the temporary traffic control zone or in damage to property in an amount equal to $1,000 or more.
5. The requirements of subsection 3 do not apply to an area designated as a temporary traffic control zone:
(a) Pursuant to an emergency which results from a natural or other disaster and which threatens the health, safety or welfare of the public; or
(b) On a public highway where the posted speed limit is 25 miles per hour or less and that provides access to or is appurtenant to a residential area.
6. A person who would otherwise be subject to an additional penalty pursuant to this section is not subject to an additional penalty if the violation occurred in a temporary traffic control zone for which signs are not erected pursuant to subsection 5, unless the violation results in injury to any person performing highway construction or maintenance or other work in the temporary traffic control zone or in damage to property in an amount equal to $1,000 or more.
9LVMC 10.76.010 Prohibited—Where.
(A) At any of the following locations, it is unlawful for any person to drink an alcoholic beverage or to possess an open container of alcoholic beverage which was purchased in an original sealed or corked container:
(1) Upon any premises, including the parking lot, of an establishment which is licensed to sell alcoholic beverages on an off-sale basis;
(2) Upon property, other than residential property, located within one thousand feet of an establishment which is licensed to sell alcoholic beverages on an off-sale basis; or
(3) Upon property, other than residential property or property designated in time-limited special event licenses issued pursuant to LVMC Chapter 6.50, located within one thousand feet of a church, synagogue, public or private school, hospital, special care facility, withdrawal management facility or homeless shelter.
(B) The distances referred to in Subsection (A) shall be determined with reference to the shortest distance between the point of consumption or possession of an open container of alcoholic beverage and the nearest portion of any of the designated structures without regard to intervening obstacles.
(C) For purposes of this Section, "off-sale basis" means the sale of alcoholic beverages in original sealed or corked containers for consumption off the premises where the same are sold.
(Ord. No. 6266, § 41, 9-4-13; Ord. 5563 § 1, 2003: Ord. 5106 § 1, 1998: Ord. 3167 § 1, 1985)
LVMC 10.84.020 Consumption and possession of alcoholic beverages.
It is unlawful for any person to consume an alcoholic beverage or to possess an open container of alcoholic beverage at any bus stop bench, bus stop shelter or at the Downtown Transportation Center.
(Ord. 3788 § 3, 1994)
10 See LVMC 10.76.020 Special events.
For any special event that will take place on New Years Eve, the fourth of July or at any other time at which more than one thousand spectators or participants are expected to attend, it is unlawful for any person to possess or consume an alcoholic beverage in any glass or metal container during any of the following times if the producer or promoter has complied with the provisions of Subsection (B) of Section 6.78.045:
(A) Between the hours of six p.m. on December 31st and six a.m. on January 1st of each year.
(B) Between the hours of six p.m. on July 4th and six a.m. on July 5th of each year.
(C) During the period of time beginning two hours before the start of the special event and ending two hours after the special event is over.
(Ord. No. 6329, § 5, 6-18-14; Ord. 5189 § 3, 1999)
11See CCC 8.20.020.325 Retail beer and wine license.
(a) A "retail beer and wine license" permits the sale of beer and wine in open containers for consumption on the licensed premises only, unless otherwise permitted in this section.
(b) Retail beer and wine service is permitted in a billiard parlor, a karaoke club, wine cellar business, a restaurant and a category 2 restaurant, unless there is a drive-thru or walk-up window, or in a hospital where service of beer or wine is complimentary and in conjunction with the birth of a child or other similar special event.
(c) A retail beer and wine license shall not be issued in conjunction with a service bar license at the same licensed premises, except to resort hotel licensees. However, the license of a licensee who was granted a retail beer and wine license and a service bar license prior to June 1, 1997, at the same licensed premises, may be renewed if the location does not remain without that combination of licenses for a period of six consecutive months.
(Ord. L-233-06, § 6, 2006: Ord. L-232-05 § 67, 2005)
12 CCC 12.35.010 Unlawful—Where.
The drinking of any intoxicating liquor or any fermented malt beverage or the possession of any open container which contains an intoxicating liquor or fermented malt beverage is unlawful in the following places:
(A) Within one thousand feet of the store from which liquor, beer and wine was purchased in closed containers, except on residential property;
(B) In any parking lot;
(C) On the property or premises of the establishment from which the closed container of liquor, beer or wine was purchased.
(Ord. 919 § 1, 1985)
13CCC 19.04.030 Prohibited conduct generally.
Within the limits of any public county park, it shall be unlawful for any person or persons to do any of the following acts hereinafter specified:
(a) To cut, break, injure, deface, or disturb any tree, shrub, plant, rock, building, cage pen, monument, fence, bench or other structure, apparatus or property; or to pluck, pull up, cut, take or remove any shrub, bush, plant or flower; or to mark or write upon, paint or deface in any manner, any building, monument, fence, bench or other structure;
(b) To cut or remove any wood, turf, grass, soil, rock, sand, gravel, or fertilizer;
(c) To leave garbage, cans, bottles, papers or other refuse elsewhere than in the receptacles provided therefor;
(d) To indulge in riotous, boisterous, threatening, or indecent conduct, or abusive, threatening, profane, or indecent language;
(e) To disturb in any manner any picnic, meeting, service, concert, exercise or exhibition;
(f) To sell or offer for sale any merchandise, article or thing whatsoever without approval of the county commission; provided, that nonprofit organizations may sell or offer for sale any food, nonalcoholic or alcoholic beverages, merchandise, article or thing with approval of the director of the Clark County department of parks and recreation; and provided, that any person or organization with a reservation for the use of a parks and recreation special facility may sell or offer for sale alcoholic beverages with a license issued under Chapter 8.20 and with approval of the director;
(g) To consume any alcoholic beverage or possess an open container containing any alcoholic beverage in or on parking lots, playground areas, roadways, or swimming pools or at any youth athletic event;
(h) To consume any alcoholic beverage or possess an open container containing any alcoholic beverage except in properly designated areas, or when associated with county permitted events and only if the container is a non-glass container.
(Ord. 3579 § 2, 2007: Ord. 3503 § 6, 2007; Ord. 3000 § 5, 2003; Ord. 1526 § 2, 1993: Ord. 729 § 1, 1981: Ord. 269 § 3, 1967) (Ord. No. 4183, § 6, 3-4-2014)
14CCC 7.50.200 Prohibited acts.
It is unlawful:
(a) For any person to operate a pedicab business in the "restricted areas" as defined in Clark County Code Chapter 14.42 unless exempted pursuant to Section 14.42.050
(b) For any operator of a pedicab to deceive or attempt to deceive any passenger who rides or desires to ride in the operator's pedicab;
(c) For any operator of a pedicab to convey or attempt to convey any passenger to a destination other than the one directed by the passenger;
(d) For any operator of a pedicab to take a longer route to the passenger's destination than is necessary, unless specifically requested to do so by the passenger;
(e) For any operator of a pedicab to operate any pedicab within the unincorporated areas of Clark County without a valid policy of commercial general liability coverage or business auto coverage with a pedicab endorsement;
(f) For any operator of a pedicab to accept any form of compensation including gratuities and/or donations, from any agent of a business establishment for the delivery of passengers to such business;
(g) For any operator of a pedicab to consume or allow to be consumed any type of liquor/alcoholic beverage in a pedicab; and
(h) For any operator of a pedicab to allow the possession of any open container of any type of liquor/alcoholic beverage in a pedicab.
(Ord. 3035 § 1 (part), 2004)
15 Shine, Conor, "Glass bottles no longer allowed on Las Vegas Strip," Las Vegas Review-Journal (Sept. 16, 2014)
CCC 12.43.020 Possession—Unlawful where and when.
It is unlawful for any person to be in possession of any glass or aluminum container which is fit for beverage purposes or intended for beverage purposes:
(a)While on any public street that is temporarily closed to vehicular traffic, including Las Vegas Boulevard, south of Sahara Avenue and north of Sunset Avenue, and the sidewalks bordering such public street during the following times:
(1) Between the hours of six p.m. December 31st and six a.m. January 1st of each year;
(2) Between the hours of six p.m. July 4th and six a.m. July 5th of each year; and
(3) Between the hours beginning two hours before and ending two hours after any special event as defined in Section 12.43.010; and
(b) While on Casino Drive in the township of Laughlin between State Route 163 and Needles Highway during the following times: between the hours of 12:00 noon on the Thursday preceding the last Sunday in the month of April and 6:00 a.m. of the last Sunday in the month of April of each year.
(Ord. 2097 § 2, 1998: Ord. 1943 § 1 (part), 1997: Ord. 1640 § 1(2), 1994)
16CCC 12.43.030 Violation—Penalty.
A violation of this chapter shall be punished by a fine not exceeding two hundred fifty dollars or imprisonment for a term not exceeding thirty days, or by any combination of such fine and imprisonment.
(Ord. 1640 § 1(3), 1994)
17RMC Sec. 8.12.033 - Drinking or possessing an open container in a public place prohibited.
(a) For purposes of this section and section 8.12.035, "open container" is defined as any vessel filled or partially filled with an alcoholic beverage, including but not necessarily limited to, bottles or cans purchased at retail that have been opened, had the seal broken or had the contents partially removed, cups, glasses, flasks, and any other vessel manufactured for or used to contain alcohol if, based upon a police officer's experience, the officer concludes the vessel contains alcohol.
(b) Except as permitted in section 8.12.035 or section 8.23.120, a person shall not consume any alcoholic beverage while upon any public property or facility held out to the public's use or any place where the public is likely to congregate.
(c) Except as permitted in section 8.12.035 or section 8.23.120, a person shall not have in his possession any open container of alcoholic beverage with the intent to consume said alcoholic beverage while upon any public property or facility held out to the public's use or any place where the public is likely to congregate.
(d) Possession of an open container containing an alcoholic beverage by any person shall create a rebuttable presumption that such person did intend to consume the contents thereof in violation of this section.
(e) Penalties. Any person convicted under this section shall be punished for a misdemeanor.
(Ord. No. 3756, § 1, 1-9-89; Ord. No. 5013, § 1, 6-22-99; Ord. No. 5231, § 1, 4-10-01; Ord. No. 5378, § 1, 10-22-02)
RMC Sec 18.08.203. - Standards for Accessory Uses and Structures.
(e) Standards for Specific Accessory Uses.
(5) Sidewalk cafés.
e. Alcoholic beverage restrictions. The service of alcoholic beverages shall be restricted solely to on-premise consumption by customers within the outdoor dining area. Each of the following standards apply to service of alcoholic beverages:
1. The outdoor dining area must be immediately adjacent to and abutting the indoor restaurant which provides it with food and beverage service;
2. The outdoor dining area must be clearly separated from pedestrian traffic;
3. The operator shall post a written notice to customers that the drinking or carrying of an open container of alcoholic beverage is prohibited and unlawful outside the outdoor dining area; and 4. The outdoor dining operation must maintain a valid alcoholic beverage license.
(Ord. No. 4546, § 1, 8-8-95; Ord. No. 5189, § 1, 9-26-00; Ord. No. 5924, § 2, 5-9-07; Ord. No. 5938, § 2, 6-27-07; Ord. No. 6007, § 2, 2-27-08; Ord. No. 6170, § 1, 1-19-11; Ord. No. 6332, § 3, 5-14-14)
RMC Sec. 5.07.046. - Signage required.
The licensee of an establishment where alcohol is sold for consumption on the premises shall post a sign at all publicly-used exits of the establishment notifying patrons that it is unlawful to consume alcohol or to possess an open container of alcohol upon public property. The sign shall identify the ordinance that prohibits such consumption or possession (RMC 8.12.033, as amended), shall notify that a person violating such ordinance may be fined up to $1,000.00, may be punished by imprisonment in jail up to six months or may be both fined and imprisoned. The sign shall be posted so that it is clearly visible to patrons exiting the business.
(Ord. No. 6131, § 1, 11-18-09)
RMC Sec. 8.12.035. - Drinking or possessing an open container during a special event.
(a) A person may consume an alcoholic beverage or have in his possession an open container while attending a special event which has been permitted pursuant to Title 5, provided however, the person is physically within the boundaries of the event and the open container complies with the terms of the special event alcohol permit issued therefor.
(Ord. No. 3756, § 1, 1-9-89; Ord. No. 5014, § 1, 6-22-99)