Frederick County DUI Drug Lawyer
DUI stands for driving under the influence. Although this offense typically involves alcohol, any substance that impairs a driver’s ability to safely operate their vehicle on the roads could lead to DUI charges. DUI laws are in place to ensure that the roads are safe for everybody, so even one person who is intoxicated could put many people in danger. If you were arrested for operating a vehicle while impaired by a controlled substance, get in touch with a Frederick County DUI drug lawyer right away to protect your rights through the legal process.
Could a Driver Still be Arrested for a DUI if They Were Using Legal Medication?
There is no requirement, limitation or law, that a person can take a prescribed medication at will and not have any consequences if they are affected by that behind the wheel. Many people are prescribed strong painkillers, sleeping medications, or even anti-depressants that could negatively affect their ability to safely operate their car. Even over-the-counter allergy medications like Benadryl could cause a driver to be drowsy, potentially leading to accidents and harm. If a driver is failing to drive safely and they are pulled over, any type of substance they voluntarily ingested could lead to a DUI drug charge in Frederick County.
Key Mistakes to Avoid in a Drugged Driving Case
A drug DUI case is treated differently and presented differently by the state because there is no breath test for drugs like there is for alcohol. In fact, many individuals will exhibit signs of impairment and the responding officer may assume it is from alcohol, prompting a breathalyzer test, but then they blow 0.0 BAC, suggesting the consumption of other substances. If a driver is showing obvious effects of impairment, a qualified police officer can testify to impairment if they are a drug recognition expert (DRE). This examination can delineate whether it is a depressant, a stimulant, or in another drug family altogether.
It is essential to remember that someone who is pulled over or arrested should say nothing more to the law enforcement officer than is absolutely necessary and legally required. As soon as possible, they should contact a drug DUI lawyer to ensure they say nothing incriminating. Even offhandedly saying that they took something earlier could be used as a confession and potentially lead to conviction.
Involuntary intoxication is a defense to virtually any charge because when someone is drugged or had something given to them without their knowledge, then they cannot be held accountable for their actions. However, the defendant must have been completely and unequivocally oblivious and not know that they were consuming what they were consuming.
How Do Law Enforcement Officers Test for Drugs After a DUI Arrest?
A person could be asked to do a blood test or a urine test for the presence of drugs, but the problem with that is that it does not show timing. A person may have consumed a controlled substance at an earlier time, but still test positive for the substance long after the effects have worn off. However, there is a barrage of tests that a person who is a certified DRE or drug recognition expert can do that will better explain or delineate whether a person is under the influence. The police will try to conduct these tests to prove impairment, but it is in a person’s best interest to wait to do anything else until after they have called their Frederick County drug DUI lawyer.
How an Attorney Could Help a Drugged Driver
Like any other DUI or charge, a DUI drug charge is a serious criminal offense. You could be prosecuted or put in jail, and it is important that you fight to protect your rights. Only someone experienced in this field will know what proper steps to take to preserve those rights and challenge the state’s case as best as they can. Call a dedicated Frederick County Drug DUI lawyer today to schedule a consultation for your case.