When most people hear that a person has been charged with driving under the influence, they automatically assume that the offense involves alcohol. But there are many drugs besides alcohol that can impair a driver and lead to a drug-related DUI charge.
For example, many people continue to drive while they are being treated for various forms of pain, perhaps from a back injury that requires a muscle relaxant to dull a constant and intense ache. Other people who smoke marijuana on a regular basis may feel they’re in control when they get behind the wheel. But the fact of the matter is that many different types of drugs can impair a driver, making them liable to be charged with a drug-related DUI offense.
Just because a doctor has legally prescribed a drug and you can legally possess it, does not mean that you can also legally operate a car or truck if that drug interferes with your ability to drive.
Mounting a drug related DUI charges defense
When you are charged with a DUI defense in Texas, you are actually going to face two separate cases. One will take place with the Texas Department of Motor Vehicles, and the other will be in a Texas state criminal court. Your attorney will need to focus efforts on both of them.
The DMV case will be an administrative hearing that could lead to the suspension of your driving privileges.
Criminal charges can be severe and upon conviction could result in fines, a lengthy jail sentence, mandatory counseling, as well as other possible penalties.
It is more difficult to prosecute a person under the influence of drugs than alcohol, mainly because cases involving alcohol are prosecuted based on a blood alcohol level being above 0.08 percent or higher. It is easy to measure this, and most law enforcement agencies are well equipped to do so. However, collecting evidence that can be used later is often problematic when there’s a wide variety of possible drugs in a driver’s system. This is where an attorney will focus their arguments much of the time.
The Law Office of Maverick Ray serves clients in Houston, Pasadena and other nearby Texas communities.