(a) As used in this section, “nitrous oxide” refers to any of the following substances: N2O, dinitrogen monoxide, dinitrogen oxide, nitrogen oxide, or laughing gas.
(b) Every person who sells, furnishes, administers, distributes, gives away, or offers to sell, furnish, administer, distribute, or give away a device, canister, tank, or receptacle either exclusively containing nitrous oxide or exclusively containing a chemical compound mixed with nitrous oxide, to a person under 18 years of age is guilty of a misdemeanor. The court shall consider ordering the person to perform community service as a condition of probation.
(c) (1) It is a defense to this crime that the defendant honestly and reasonably believed that the minor involved in the offense was at least 18 years of age.
(2) The defendant shall bear the burden of establishing this defense by a preponderance of the evidence.
(d) For the purpose of preventing a violation of this section, any person may refuse to sell, furnish, administer, distribute, or give away a device, canister, tank, or receptacle either exclusively containing nitrous oxide or exclusively containing a chemical compound mixed with nitrous oxide to a person who is unable to produce adequate proof of age of majority.
(e) On and after July 1, 2010, the court shall order the suspension of the business license, for a period of up to one year, of a person who knowingly violates this section after having been previously convicted of a violation of this section, unless the owner of the business license can demonstrate a good faith attempt to prevent illegal sales or deliveries by the owner’s employees.
(f) This section shall not apply to any person who administers nitrous oxide for the purpose of providing medical or dental care, if administered by a medical or dental practitioner licensed by this state or at the direction or under the supervision of a practitioner licensed by this state.
(g) This section does not apply to the sale of nitrous oxide contained in food products for use as a propellant.
(Added by Stats. 2009, Ch. 266, Sec. 1. (AB 1015) Effective January 1, 2010.)
Last modified: October 25, 2018