Los Angeles Marijuana DUI Lawyers Representing Clients Accused Of Drugged Driving
Driving under the influence of any drug is illegal in the state of California. This includes not only illegal narcotics, but also prescription medication, marijuana, and even over the counter medications. When drugs are associated with the DUI, the crime is often referred to as DUID, and it is vital to have the help of a Los Angeles DUID lawyer.
Attorneys Helping Clients Charged With DUI For Weed
California legalized marijuana possession (by those over 21) on January 1, 2018. However, the legalization of marijuana in California has no effect on the state’s laws regarding driving a vehicle while impaired by marijuana.
There is evidence that THC hinders a person’s ability to drive since it affects their cognition, attention, coordination, and reaction time. Drivers who are impaired due to marijuana use can have trouble maintaining focus on the road which makes driving. This is incredibly dangerous for the person driving and other cars on the road.
Driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol are very similar, but there are several key differences. They both affect your nervous system in a way where you are impaired and in an altered state of consciousness. However, there are significant differences between the two offenses when being charged.
As an award-winning DUI law firm, we have helped hundreds of clients fight their charges. Here are some of the most common questions we have received:
What Is A Per Se Marijuana DUI?
In order to prove a per se marijuana DUI, a prosecutor generally needs to produce blood test results showing the driver was over the legal limit. If a prosecutor can do that, it wouldn’t matter whether or not the person’s ability to drive was actually affected by marijuana. A per se conviction is simply based on the amount of THC in the driver’s system.
How Impairment Plays A Role In DUID Charges?
The level of impairment that the prosecution must prove varies from state to state but, in order to prove an impairment DUI, the prosecutor must show that the driver was actually drunk or stoned. Some states say that a driver is under the influence if impacted by drugs or alcohol in any way. Other states require proof that the alcohol or drugs had a substantial effect on the driver.
What Is The Role Of A Drug Recognition Expert?
In many DUID cases, a specially trained DRE is used 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.
The prosecution will also use police or DRE reports that indicate “signs of marijuana use” as the following:
- Erratic driving.
- Admission of marijuana use to the officer.
- Failure to pass the field sobriety tests.
- Police discovery of marijuana or marijuana-related paraphernalia in the vehicle.
If you are arrested for DUID, you will be taken to the police station, and the DRE may give you a blood draw. The DRE will also testify at your trial. However, a blood test for THC is not as reliable as a blood test for alcohol since THC can stay in a person’s bloodstream for up to 8 weeks. This can be used in your defense.
If you are arrested, comply with the officers but be sure not to make any admissions until you are released from jail. Anything you say can be used against you in court.
The best way to get these charges dropped is to hire a skilled DUI defense attorney who offers years of experience in marijuana-related DUIs.
Are There Defenses To Marijuana DUIs?
Some of the common defenses we use against marijuana DUI charges are the same as against DUI alcohol, while others differ. Here are the most common defenses we use:
- Your Rights Were Violated
- Your DUI case may be dismissed if you were stopped or arrested without probable cause, arrested without being read your Miranda Rights, or were subject to illegal searches.
- Title 17 Violation
- If a driver is stopped on suspicion of a DUID and there are tests administrated by law enforcement, the officer must follow the Title 17 procedures. Title 17 is meant to ensure that chemical tests for DUIs are accurate and a violation of any of the procedures can produce inaccurate tests.
- Incorrect Test Results
- False positives can sometimes happen, though it is rare when it comes to testing for THC. There are various drugs that can give a false reading, and if that can be proven, you can likely get your DUI case dismissed.
- You Were Not Driving Under the Influence
- Marijuana is much more difficult to test for than alcohol because it can stay in a person’s system for long periods of time. It is possible that you tested positive for marijuana, but there may be no proof that you were actually high at the time of your arrest.
What Are The Penalties For A Weed DUI?
If you are convicted of DUID, you will face the same penalties as you would for a DUI:
- License suspension
- Drivers with a DUID charge are often subjected to a driver’s license suspension, and while they are unable to drive, they will have to pay for another mode of transportation. When the suspension is up, the driver will have to pay an administrative service fee and a reissuing fee that costs a total of about $170.
- Jail Time
- Jail time for DUI drugs is a minimum of two days and can be up to six months.
- The average fine for a marijuana DUI in California is $1,800 and can go up to $2,600.
- Safety Classes
- The driver may be required to take a treatment program. The payment for these programs is the driver’s responsibility, and they can cost up to $650 or more depending on how many hours are required.
Contact The Los Angeles Marijuana DUI Law Firm Of Braden & Tucci Today
Having the help of a qualified attorney can be crucial if you are facing DUI charges in California. The experienced attorneys at Braden & Tucci offer years of experience and are available to assist you.
A skilled DUI defense lawyer can help determine whether or not your charges can be dismissed or reduced, if plea bargains are available, and much more. To learn more about how our lawyers can help you, contact Braden & Tucci at (213) 935-7550.