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Montgomery County DUI Drug Lawyer
The criminal and administrative penalties for a DUI drug can be severe. Having a Montgomery County drug DUI lawyer who understands the law and understands the system in Montgomery County can have a very significant impact on the actual outcome that you face in a DUI drug case. Speaking to competent legal counsel is extraordinarily important in these types of cases. Call and schedule a consultation today with a DUI lawyer in Montgomery County to discuss your case.
Biggest Mistakes to Avoid in Drug DUI Cases
The big mistakes in drug DUIs are almost identical to alcohol DUIs. The two big mistakes are making admissions to police and performing field sobriety tests. However, as Montgomery County drug DUI lawyers know, there are additional mistakes to avoid in drug DUI cases.
For a drug impaired DUI case, there will also be an opportunity to speak to a drug recognition expert or DRE. Speaking to those individuals in my experience is usually a mistake. You don’t have to speak to a drug recognition expert and in fact you have the opportunity to refuse to cooperate with their examination. The point of that examination is to gather evidence for the prosecution and therefore Montgomery County DUI drug lawyers typically believe that most people are better served by refusing to do the DRE evaluation.
Drug DUI Charges in Montgomery County
There are two types of drug impaired driving charges in Maryland. As a Montgomery County DUI drug lawyer can tell you, they are both violations of transportation article 21-902. One is 21-902(c)(1) and the other is 21-902(d)(1).
Driving While Impaired By Prescription Drugs and/or Alcohol 21-902(c)
The C offense is driving while impaired by a prescription drugs and alcohol or a combination of those two things. This would include if somebody is taking a prescribed sleeping medication and decides to drive, or where somebody has an interaction between the prescription drugs and alcohol and drive the vehicle. That would be a 21-902(c)(1) violation.
Driving While Impaired By a Controlled Substance 21-902(d)
21-902(d)(1) is for individuals who are driving while impaired by a controlled dangerous substance. That is usually seen where somebody is driving a vehicle with some kind of illegal drug either marijuana or cocaine or heroin or something like that.
Difference in Penalties
The penalties for the 21-902(c)(1) are lower than the penalties with a 21-902(d)(1) offense. The C offense carries a maximum of 60 days of incarceration for the first offense and a D offense carries a maximum of 1 year of incarceration for the first offense.
Legal and Prescribed Medication
It doesn’t matter whether the individual is prescribed the drug. The issue in a DUI drug case is whether the individual’s ability to operate a motor vehicle was impaired by the consumption of that drug. Showing a prescription for whatever it is that’s triggering the impairment is not a defense in a driving impaired case. This is another reason why it is so important to contact an experienced and knowledgeable Montgomery County drug DUI lawyer if you are facing these serious charges.
Involuntary intoxication is a defense, however it is not one that you see very often. With that said there have been cases where somebody slipped something into an individual’s drink which is a perfect defense to a DUI case. Involuntary intoxication, although difficult to prove, is a good defense. Voluntary intoxication on the other hand is not a defense. If you voluntarily consumed a drug knowing what the side effects are then you can not use that as a defense.
Drug Tests in Montgomery County Drug DUI Cases
There are two levels of testing for drugs in a typical DUI drug case. The first step is an interview with a drug recognition evaluator. That’s an officer who has received some training in how to recognize the effects of drugs on an individual. They will take your temperature, your pulse, look in your eyes and interview you in order to determine whether or not you’re impaired by drugs. At that point, they will also ask you to submit a blood test and that’s the second level of testing for impairment. You have an absolute right to refuse to speak to a drug recognition evaluator. There is no penalty for refusing that. However, if you refuse to submit to a blood test, the penalties for that are exactly the same as refusing to submit to a breathalyzer test in a standard DUI case.
Other Evidence of Drug Impairment
The government will seek to prove that by driving behavior, by admissions, by things found in the vehicle and by performance on the standardized field sobriety test as well as the DRE report and medical blood test.
Contact a Montgomery County Drug DUI Lawyer Today
DUI cases are complex and it is a very specific area of law involving traffic laws, criminal defense, and DUI-specific tests and procedures. Drug DUI cases are even more specific, as officers use particular tests and Drug Recognition Experts (DRE) to try to determine the level of impairment of the driver. Lastly, Montgomery County takes DUIs very seriously, and local experience in these courts can be helpful.
For these reasons, it is important to contact an experienced and knowledgeable Montgomery County DUI drug lawyer who has handled drug DUI cases in the past. Schedule a free consultation with a Montgomery County drug DUI lawyer today. It does not cost you anything, and you can learn more about the charges you are facing and what you can expect from your case.