Evidence in Salisbury DUI Drug Cases
Unlike in an alcohol related DUI case where a breathalyzer may be used to prove impairment, in a DUID case other evidence must be collected. The following is information on that evidence and how it is typically collected by law enforcement officers. For more information or to begin building a defense for your case, call and schedule a consultation with a Salisbury DUI Drug lawyer today.
How Evidence is Collected For a DUID Case
The officer is going to begin by making observations about the driver. He will see if there is an odor of alcoholic beverage on the driver’s breath, if the driver has glassy and bloodshot eyes, or if the driver exhibits slurred speech.
If there’s no odor of alcohol but the driver does appear to be under the influence of something, the officer will next ask the driver to take a preliminary breath test to see if there is any sort of reading for alcohol. If the breath test gives a very low or a zero reading, then the officer will suspect the influence of drugs. At that point, the officer then is going to start shifting his investigation to be looking for evidence of drug use.
Types of Questions An Officer May Ask
The officer will probably ask the driver if the driver has taken anything. Sometimes drivers are extremely candid during the questioning, and tell the officer exactly what they had consumed. In other cases, the officer may observe something in the car that is evidence that the driver consumed some sort of drug. For example, if there were a pipe or some type of smoking device, or drug storage containers, the police would have evidence that the driver may have consumed drugs.
If the driver in question is placed under arrest for suspicion of driving under the influence of drugs, the officer will do a search of the driver, including their clothes and the purse on a female driver. The officer may find drugs directly on the driver while conducting the search.
Other Evidence That May Be Collected
Other evidence that a driver or that a police officer could rely on would be the investigation conducted by a drug recognition expert. The officer would contact the DRE and ask that officer to conduct an examination. That examination is 12-steps and will help the DRE determine whether the driver is under the influence of drugs, and if so, what kind of drugs.
The driver may also be willing to give a blood sample so that the officer the state can see if there are any drugs present in the bloodstream.
Role of Field Sobriety Tests in DUID Cases
Law enforcement will ask the driver to perform the same type of standardized field sobriety tests as they would if they suspected that the driver was under the influence of alcohol. Because the field sobriety tests will help determine whether the person is under the influence of alcohol or drugs, the results help the office see if the driver has any issues with their coordination, their ability to speak coherently, or ability to follow directions.
The findings from those tests would be relevant whether the driver were under the influence of alcohol or under the influence of drugs or both.