Montgomery County Prescription Drug DUI Lawyer
Prescription drugs are controlled dangerous substances that can only be administered to a person by way of a prescription from a doctor or a specially licensed pharmacist. Sometimes, these drugs can cause someone to become too impaired to operate a motor vehicle safely. Even when the drugs were taken legally, driving under the influence is a crime.
If you were charged with driving under the influence of a prescription medication, get in touch with a Montgomery County prescription drug DUI lawyer today. A seasoned DUI drug defense attorney could negotiate with prosecutors or fight in court in order to resolve your case favorably.
Common Prescriptions Involved in DUIs
People charged with prescription drug DUIs often take drugs to treat a medical condition, and they do not intend to become impaired. Perceived impairment may be related to side effects. For example, taking a sleep aid, cold medicine, or an anti-anxiety pill could make a person unfit to drive.
People have a responsibility to recognize the side effects of medications and how they impact one’s ability to safely operate a vehicle. Whether or not they intended to be impaired or under the influence of prescription medication at the time they were behind the wheel of a car is of no consequence. Their lack of awareness of how their body responds to particular medication is their responsibility. They can still be charged for driving while impaired by a controlled dangerous substance.
Elements of a Prescription Drug DUI Charge
To be charged with a prescription drug DUI, an individual must show signs of impairment linked to prescription medications. The state relies on urinalysis testing, blood testing, and the opinions of DREs at the police station or scene of an event to determine whether they were impaired by a controlled dangerous substance while driving.
The role of a DRE is to provide an opinion about someone’s impairment, correlating that impairment to a prescription drug they might have consumed, and determining whether there is evidence that the person consumed a prescription drug.
The penalties for prescription drug DUI charges could include a period of incarceration, points on the individual’s driving record, possible suspension of driving privileges, and heavy fines imposed by the court. The court can also order a period of supervised probation, extensive treatment, and other sanctions as imposed by a judge.
When someone does not have a prescription for drugs they consumed, they are considered to be committing two criminal offenses: possessing and using unlawfully controlled dangerous substances not prescribed to them and driving while impaired.
Importance of Providing an Attorney With All Medical Information
It is important to provide all medical information to the Montgomery County prescription drug DUI lawyer to help explain certain situations, particularly in mitigation. A person who took a legally prescribed medication before getting behind the wheel of a vehicle could offer an explanation to a prosecutor or judge, even though it may not make their conduct legal. The circumstances could mitigate the situation to have the case dismissed by a prosecutor or have the penalties significantly reduced by a judge.
Analyzing a Case and Preparing a Defense
Whether the substance is a prescription drug or alcohol, a Montgomery County prescription drug DUI lawyer needs to know as many facts as possible about the case, including:
- The reason the accused was initially stopped
- Their performance on standardized field sobriety tests
- What prompted the officers to have probable cause to place the person under arrest
- The types of screening conducted by breathalyzer, blood alcohol content, or urinalysis
- Whether expert opinions are offered on field sobriety tests or chemical screening
Those pieces of information are helpful for a defense attorney to know before formulating the most effective defense on behalf of the accused.
How a Montgomery County Prescription Drug DUI Attorney Could Help
Prescription drug DUI cases are based heavily on constitutional principles regarding search and seizure, field sobriety testing, and chemical testing used during traffic stops and arrests. People usually do not have the legal experience needed to handle their own case effectively. They do themselves a tremendous disservice by trying to move forward with prescription drug DUI criminal charges without the assistance of an attorney who has experience dealing with these cases.
If you are facing charges, you should consult with a dedicated Montgomery County prescription drug DUI lawyer as soon as possible. A lawyer could fight tirelessly for a favorable outcome to your case. Call now to schedule a consultation and begin crafting a defense.