Los Angeles Driving Under The Influence Of Drugs Attorney Helping Clients Fight Charges
Driving under the influence of drugs (DUID) in California is treated just like an alcohol DUI in most cases. However, there are some differences that can make facing a drug DUI charge even more serious.
Law Firm Representing Drivers Accused Of DUID In California
Here are some of the most common questions our DUID lawyers receive:
What Kinds Of Drugs Can Lead To A Drugged Driving Charge?
A DUID charge can be very broad, and any of these drugs found in your system can lead to an arrest:
- Any illegal drug/controlled substance
- Prescription medication, even if you have a prescription
- Over the counter medicine
When it comes to a DUID, it does not matter if the drug is legal or not. What matters is if the drug impaired your driving. Even something as simple as Benadryl can impair your driving because it makes you drowsy.
There are also some drugs that would not normally impair your ability to drive but, when combined with alcohol, have a potentially intoxicating effect and can result in a DUID charge.
California Vehicle Code §23152 makes it illegal to:
- Drive while under the influence of any drug
- Drive while under the combined influence of drugs and alcohol
- Drive while addicted to the use of any drug and not participating in an approved treatment program
When testing for a person’s blood alcohol concentration (BAC), a breath test is generally administered. However, when it comes to testing for drugs, testing must be administered by blood.
A drug recognition expert (DRE) may be called to the scene when drugs are involved in order to examine the individual. This expert can also testify to the symptoms and influence of drugs in the system.
What Does A Drug Recognition Expert (DRE) Do?
In many DUID cases, a specially trained DRE is brought in to build a case against you. The DRE will examine you for signs of drug use by administering sobriety tests. An experienced Los Angeles DUI lawyer understands how these experts are trained, what procedures they must follow, and how to look for flaws in their process or conclusions.
When it comes to drugs that could cause a driver to be impaired, they are generally divided into three categories: illicit drugs, prescription drugs, and marijuana.
These drugs can cause hallucination and delusion, thus affecting a driver’s ability to be cognizant on the road.
- Antidepressant medication (Lexapro)
- Anti-anxiety medication (Xanax)
- Sleeping medication (Ambien)
- Pain medication
- Allergy medication
Any of these medications can cause drowsiness, tremors, blurred vision, dizziness, nausea and negatively affect your driving skills.
When Is A DUID Considered A Felony?
Driving under the influence of drugs is already an extremely serious crime. Even if no one is harmed, there can be devastating consequences. Drug DUI crimes are often charged as misdemeanors, but they can be upgraded to felonies depending on whether or not these factors are involved:
- Driving with a child in the vehicle.
- If drugs are found in your system and a child was in the vehicle with you, you will likely be charged with a felony DUI.
- A crash resulted in damage or injury-causing crash.
- If you get into a crash while driving intoxicated that results in an injury, death, or even property damage, this can result in a felony charge.
- Multiple DUI offenses.
- If you have been charged with multiple DUIs in ten year’s time and you are charged again, it may be considered a felony.
- Driving with a suspended license.
- If you drive while intoxicated and are driving on a suspended or revoked license, you may face felony charges.
What Is A DUI Per Se?
With a per se DUI charge, prosecutors need to be able to prove that the driver had a prohibited amount of a particular substance in the driver’s body. In order to prove this, they will rely in large part on the test results showing the amount of the particular substance in the driver’s body.
What Are The Punishments For Drugged Driving In California?
The level of impairment that the prosecution must prove varies from state to state, but in order to prove a drug DUI, the prosecutor must show that the driver was actually intoxicated or stoned.
A first-time conviction for DUID could include the following penalties:
- Up to 6 months of jail time
- Up to $1,000 in fines
- Up to 6 months of driver’s license suspension (after jail)
- Mandatory ignition interlock device
How Can A Top Los Angeles DUID Attorney Fight The Charges?
A DUID case depends on a law enforcement officer’s observation that suggest impairment. These observations can be disputed. In some situations, signs of impairment by drugs can be the result of additional factors including sleepiness or another medical condition.
Also, even if you take a blood test and the sample indicates that you have a controlled substance in your body, that doesn’t mean that you were impaired.
Other potential defenses are as follows:
- There was no probable cause to stop you.
- There was no reasonable suspicion to arrest you.
- Your blood was tested without a warrant or your consent.
- Incorrect procedures were used when drawing or analyzing your blood.
- Your Miranda rights were never read.
If You Have Been Charged With A DUID In L.A. County, Call Braden & Tucci Today
DUI charges involving alcohol are more straightforward, but when it comes to DUID charges, it’s much trickier. The level of impairment at any given time is difficult for officers to assess, a qualified Los Angeles DUID attorney can provide a defense to these charges. If you’ve been charged with driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, it’s in your best interest to contact the skilled DUI defense attorney of Braden & Tucci as soon as possible.
An attorney from our law firm will know how to best advise you on the specific circumstances of your case and help you to navigate the legal process. Because impairment from drugs is more difficult to prove than impairment from alcohol, our attorneys have more leverage when negotiating your case.
To speak with our reputable attorneys, contact us by calling (213) 935-7550.