Prescription Drugs

Getting Arrested for Driving on Prescription Drugs

When it comes to alcohol, a DUI (driving under the influence) charge can be simple. The police have many different methods of gathering evidence. Though not always exact, a breathalyzer can still give authorities a general sense of how much someone drank. Blood tests are even more accurate. They reveal exactly how much alcohol is in the bloodstream, and these results are hard to dispute.

Driving under the influence of drugs (DUID) is also illegal. If the police believe that anything has impaired your driving, including legal prescriptions, they could arrest you with a DUID. Here are some reasons why.

There Is Less Evidence

It’s much harder for police to find solid evidence in a DUID arrest. There are no breathalyzers that can test whether you’ve taken cocaine, meth, or most other drugs.

Even blood tests aren’t reliable. They cover most common street drugs, but there are plenty of drugs they don’t cover. This includes many prescription drugs that the police could blame on poor driving.

When blood tests do yield positive results, they are easier to refute in court. All the police need to see are trace amounts of the drug. Someone could be stone sober while driving, but if their blood reveals even the smallest level of a drug they took days ago, they could be charged with a DUID.

Police Go With Their Gut

Ultimately, when it comes to a DUID arrest, police are allowed to rely on their intuition.

They can simply judge someone’s behavior and decide that person is high. This, of course, isn’t fair for many reasons. The person could be experiencing a health issue, either physical or mental. Moreover, some people just have wild, eccentric personalities. These folks often find themselves accused of being high, even when they are teetotalers.

Drivers Tell on Themselves

There is a reason lawyers always want you to remain silent when interacting with the police. First of all, it is simply your right to do so. You should always exercise all your rights when you have the chance.

More pragmatically, staying silent helps keep you from accidentally getting into trouble. When the police want to make an arrest, they will scrutinize your every word and action. You can easily say something that seems completely innocent, but just the right combination of words can get you arrested.

Think about how this general rule applies when you’ve been stopped by the police. They may ask you leading questions like, “What medications have you taken this evening?” If you answer with anything that sounds like you took medicine, that’s all the cops need to slap on handcuffs.

Whenever you are pulled over, no matter the reason, it’s best to stay silent. It is sometimes necessary to tell the police your name, address, and other basic information. Otherwise, you are under no obligation to answer any other question. Don’t tell them where you’ve been or where you’re going, and definitely do not tell them about any medication or any other substance you’ve taken, legal or otherwise. Technically, if the police believe you’ve had too much coffee, they can arrest you for driving under the influence of drugs.

Nelson, Taylor & Associates, PLLC is here to help with DUI and DUID charges. If you’ve been accused of operating a vehicle while intoxicated, contact us today for a free consultation. You can use our online contact form or call us directly at (801) 901-7046.