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State v. Guminga

Minnesota Supreme Court
395 N.W.2d 344 (1986)



During an undercover operation, two City of Hopkins investigators, along with a 17-year-old woman, entered a restaurant and ordered alcoholic drinks. The waitress did not ask the woman’s age nor requested identification. When the waitress returned with the drinks, and it was confirmed that each contained alcohol, the officers arrested the waitress for serving alcohol to a minor (under the age of 21) in violation of state law. Subsequently, the owner of the restaurant, George Joseph Guminga (defendant) was charged with a violation of state law which imposed vicarious liability on an employer whose employee served intoxicating liquor to a minor. Guminga was not aware of, and did not ratify, the waitress’ actions. Guminga’s motion to dismiss the charge was denied, but the trial court certified the question of whether the state statute violated the due process clauses of the state and federal constitutions for the Minnesota Supreme Court to answer.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Yetka, J.)

Dissent (Kelley, J.)

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