This opinion will be unpublished and
may not be cited except as provided by
Minn. Stat. § 480A.08, subd. 3 (2004).
IN COURT OF APPEALS
Rice County District Court
File No. K7041514
Mike Hatch, Attorney General, Suite 1800, NCL Tower, 445 Minnesota Street, St. Paul, MN 55101-2134; and
G. Paul Beaumaster,
John M. Stuart, State Public Defender, Suite 425, 2221
University Avenue Southeast,
Mark D. Nyvold, Special Assistant Public Defender, Suite
Considered and decided by Stoneburner, Presiding Judge; Hudson, Judge; and Dietzen, Judge.
U N P U B L I S H E D O P I N I O N
Appellant state moved to add a charge of second-degree controlled-substance crime to its complaint against respondent Marco Antonio Lopez, arguing that the mobile home from which respondent allegedly sold drugs is on the same “city block” as a municipal park and that the southernmost portion of the mobile-home court in which Lopez’s mobile home is located is within 300 feet of the municipal park, satisfying the element in Minn. Stat. § 152.022, subd. 1(6)(i) (2002), that the alleged sale took place within a “park zone.” The district court denied the state’s motion. We affirm.
Respondent Marco Antonio Lopez was arrested
after allegedly selling 0.6 grams of cocaine to a confidential, reliable
informant who was working with
The alleged sale took place in a
mobile home located in a mobile-home court that is bounded on the north by the
The district court denied appellant’s motion to add a charge of second-degree controlled-substance crime to the complaint against Lopez, holding that, as a matter of law, the alleged sale did not take place in a “park zone.” This appeal followed.
This case involves interpretation of a statute, which this court reviews de novo without deference to the district court. State v. Collins, 580 N.W.2d 36, 41 (Minn. App. 1998), review denied (Minn. July 18, 1998). Minn. Stat. § 152.022, subd. 1(6)(i) (2002) provides in relevant part that a person who unlawfully sells any amount of a Schedule I or II narcotic drug in a “park zone” is guilty of controlled-substance crime in the second degree.
“Park zone” means an area designated as a public park by the federal government, the state, a local unit of government, a park district board, or a park and recreation board in a city of the first class. “Park zone” includes the area within 300 feet or one city block, whichever distance is greater, of the park boundary.
The state first asserts that, applying the definition of “city block” as “a part of a city or town that is surrounded by streets or avenues on at least three sides,” the mobile-home court and the municipal park “are on the same block.” Even if we were to agree with this definition of “city block,” the area described by the state does not meet the definition because it is only bounded on two sides by streets or avenues. We find no merit in the state’s assertion that the mobile-home court and the municipal park in this case are located on the same “city block.”
The state next asserts that even if the mobile-home court and municipal park are not on the same city block, the mobile-home court is “within” one “city block” of the park boundary. But the state’s focus on the location of the mobile-home court rather than the location of the sale is misplaced because the statute requires that the sale must occur within the park zone in order for the statute to apply. Assuming that the private streets within the mobile-home court enclose “city blocks,” it is clear from the aerial photograph in the record that the mobile home from which the alleged sale was made is not within one city block of the park. Because it is undisputed that the sale occurred more than 300 feet from the municipal park, we conclude that the district court did not err by denying the state’s motion to add to the complaint a count of second-degree controlled-substance crime based on an alleged sale within a park zone.
 See State v.
Terrell, No. C1-95-1808, 1996 WL 330509 (Minn. App. June 18, 1996), review denied (
 The definition in Terrell
was taken from the 1990 6th edition of Black’s
Law Dictionary definition of “block.”