When a person is charged with a DUI, they have the right to defend themselves in court. Each situation is different, and therefore, and it is important to remember that the defense that works for one person might not work for you. If you have been charged with a drug DUI, your defenses will differ from those of someone charged with driving under the influence of alcohol. Here, I will discuss some of the common defenses that might apply to your drug DUI case. Again, each situation is different, so use this page as a starting point, and then contact an attorney to discuss your case.
Breathalyzer and Field Test Defenses
If you are under the influence of a drug, the breathalyzer and standardized field sobriety tests may not apply to your case. Breathalyzer test results may be found to be irrelevant to your case. If you did take the breathalyzer, these results may not apply to your case. This is particularly the case if you are suspected of being under the influence of drugs. Drugs will not show up on a breath test – this is only a valid type of test when determining if someone is intoxicated by alcohol.
The same goes for standardized field sobriety tests. These tests are designed to make you fail, but if you are not under the influence of alcohol, they may not apply to you. These tests are specifically related to determining if someone is being affected by alcohol – not other drugs. An attorney may be able to have standardized field sobriety test results thrown out of court.
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Blood and Urine Test Defenses
If someone is accused of a drug DUI, blood tests and urine tests are oftentimes administered as evidence of intoxication. However, these tests can be very inaccurate if they are not administered and analyzed correctly. What’s more, there are many steps involved in correctly administering these tests. Authorized personnel must administer and analyze the tests. Any issues with administering the test or analyzing the results could make the results inaccurate. If this happens, the results could be inadmissible in court.
In addition, just because a test shows drugs in your urine or bloodstream does not mean that you were actively under the influence of the substance at the time that you were driving your vehicle. The influence of drugs and the time that they are active in a person’s system can vary greatly. Because of this, a lawyer should argue against positive blood or urine test results.
Symptoms of Intoxication Defenses
Many times, police officers use general symptoms of intoxication or drug use to determine if a person is under the influence. For example, if an officer suspects that you are under the influence of marijuana, they might use things like red eyes, dilated pupils, or the smell of marijuana as evidence.
However, this “evidence” is very flimsy. These symptoms can be caused by other things and don’t necessarily mean that you are under the influence of marijuana. If the prosecution relies heavily on this flimsy evidence for intoxication, you can easily defend yourself against it.
For example, red eyes are caused by marijuana, but they are also caused by allergies. You can prove that you have allergies, and that caused your eye issue. The smell of marijuana also doesn’t necessarily mean that you are under the influence at the moment. Your lawyer can pick apart the police officer’s testimony and point to other reasons for symptoms of intoxication.
If you have been charged with a DUI, it is important to contact an attorney to discuss your options and defenses. A DUI attorney will be able to help you find the best defense for your case given your particular situation. For more information, you can contact my office.