Driving Under the Influence of Drugs in Arizona Lawyers

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 What is Driving Under the Influence of a Drug?

Depending on the circumstances, driving under the influence of drugs (DUID) in Arizona may be charged as a felony or a misdemeanor. After using drugs, it is forbidden for someone to operate a car or assume control of it.

To distinguish drug-induced driving from normal “driving while inebriated” regulations, the relatively new crime of “driving under the influence of drugs” (DUID) was developed. Every state currently has some DUID offense, but testing procedures and penalties differ greatly.

No matter the circumstances, a DUDI will typically result in severe penalties and repercussions if it is ultimately shown to be a criminal act. DUID charges may still be brought against you in Arizona even if you are not intoxicated when operating a car. Drugs and restricted substances are also included in the definition of “under the influence.”

A person may be charged with a drug DUI crime if they test positive for illegal drugs after being stopped in Arizona on suspicion of driving while intoxicated by alcohol, drugs, or controlled substances (DUI). A criminal violation can be brought against the suspected offender based only on the discovery of illegal drugs in the driver’s system.

Though the drugs are still in your system when you are tested, even if you took them weeks ago, this information will probably be used against you.

Speaking with a qualified DUI defense lawyer if you have been accused of a drug DUI offense in Arizona is crucial. This lawyer will challenge the prosecution’s claims regarding the validity and accuracy of blood and urine chemical tests, the administration of the tests, and any potential for error in Arizona police crime labs.

Does It Matter That I Took Prescription Medicines?

No. The legislation does not distinguish between prescription medications and illicit narcotics.

Arizona Drug DUI Laws

According to Arizona Revised Statutes 28-1381, a person can be charged with a drug DUI offense in Arizona if they operate a vehicle or have actual physical control of one while:

  • Impaired to any degree by any drug, vapor-releasing substance containing a toxic substance, or any combination of alcohol and drugs; or
  • If their body contains any illegal drugs.

As for the lengthy list of individual medications covered by this term, it may be found in ARS section 13.3401.

The following chemicals are some of the most popular medications that may give rise to drug DUI charges:

  • Marijuana (cannabis, bud, ganja, marijuana) (cannabis, bud, ganja, weed)
  • Cocaine (coca leaves)
  • Codeine
  • Heroin
  • Oxycodone
  • Morphine
  • Methamphetamines
  • Amphetamines
  • Noxious gas
  • Peyote
  • Mescaline
  • Opium
  • Ecstasy

Is there a Zero-Tolerance Policy for DUID in Arizona?

Yes. Drivers who take narcotics before operating a car are breaking the law. It makes no difference when the drug was consumed or how much was in the person’s system when they were stopped.

Driving under the influence of an illegal narcotic is a Class 1 misdemeanor, similar to a DUI based on alcohol. A person might face up to six months in jail, fines, drug testing, and treatment if found guilty. The minimum jail sentence for a DUI drug conviction is ten days; however, up to nine days may be waived by passing a drug test.

The consequences, however, increase whenever you are accused of a second or subsequent drug DUI offense.

An alcohol-related DUI typically results in a 90-day license suspension. Contrarily, there is no chance of obtaining a limited driver’s license to travel to or from work or school and a potential one-year license suspension for drug DUIs. Other charges could also be brought against you, depending on the situation.

For instance, you may be charged with transportation, drug paraphernalia, or possession. In Arizona, if you are driving a car or another vehicle, you are presumed to have consented implicitly to be tested for drugs of abuse. If you refuse to submit to the test, your driver’s license may be suspended for a year.

Your drug DUI attorney may consider issues like whether the police officer had a good basis to stop the automobile and if the field sobriety tests were properly conducted while building a case. The administration of a blood or breath test will also be investigated, as well as any procedural mistakes that may have been made in the lab where the tests were analyzed and read.

Failure to produce crucial evidence at trial may significantly impact the prosecution’s willingness to negotiate a lesser charge or request a dismissal. The prosecution must prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt.

What if I Refuse a Drug Test While I Know I’m High—Will it Get Me in Trouble?

In Arizona, implied consent is legal. If a driver is pulled over on suspicion of DUID, they must submit to a drug test. If the driver declines, there can be dire repercussions.

What Penalty Can I Expect if I’m Found Guilty of DUID?

Depending on the offense and its classification, the DUID punishment will vary. For instance, a first DUID violation is a class 1 misdemeanor punishable by up to a fine and ten days in jail.

Will I Have to Serve those Ten Days in Jail if Found Guilty?

A judge may postpone the jail sentence. However, it depends on whether the offender completes any community service or drug abuse treatment that the court mandated.

Would I Face Additional Criminal Charges if I Also Have Drug Paraphernalia in My Car?

If drug paraphernalia is discovered in the vehicle during a DUID stop, the driver may be charged with additional crimes in Arizona.

Drug DUI Evidence Challenges

DUI drug charges entail several factors that may make your case more difficult, as well as some significant events that may be in your favor. It’s critical to comprehend the circumstances surrounding the alleged offender’s arrest in a drug-related DUI case.

It’s crucial to know why a blood or urine sample was requested if the person had a chemical blood or urine test to measure blood alcohol content levels (BAC). The handling and preservation of the blood or urine sample for independent testing will be determined with the assistance of your criminal defense counsel.

A skilled criminal defense lawyer in Arizona will also look at how the police handled the investigation, how blood or urine samples were taken and handled, and if the results of these tests are reliable proof that the suspect was impaired while driving.

Suppose the police found drugs in the car of the alleged offender. In that case, a criminal defense attorney will review the case and police procedure to determine whether it is possible to contest the search of the car and point out any instances in which the police failed to follow the correct procedures.

The criminal defense lawyer for the alleged offender will probably apply to have the charges dropped if the law enforcement officer made an unauthorized search and seizure or an arrest without having a valid reason.

Do I Need a Criminal Attorney for My DUID Case?

Yes. A DUI/DWI attorney will assist you in defending against the DUID accusation and settling your case. Contact an attorney today for help. Your attorney can provide you with legal advice, representation, and guidance for your case.

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