It is illegal to operate any motor vehicle while under the influence of a foreign substance. Most people imagine charges for driving under the influence (DUI) as relating to alcohol. However, the state’s DUI statute also prohibits operating a motor vehicle while impaired due to drug use. This applies to street drugs, prescription medication, and over-the-counter drugs that may affect a person’s ability to control a motor vehicle.
If you face these types of allegations, a Phoenix drug DUI lawyer is prepared to build a strong defense on your behalf. At Grand Canyon Law Group, our seasoned attorneys work to evaluate any tests that may indicate impairment, challenge a police officer’s recollection of events, or work toward a fair plea deal that helps you avoid jail time or the creation of a criminal record.
Most people recognize and understand that driving while under the influence of alcohol is illegal. However, a close reading of Arizona’s DUI statute reveals that this prohibition extends to any substance that may affect a person’s ability to control their vehicle.
Arizona Revised Statute § 28-1381 says that it is a criminal offense to operate a vehicle on a public street or road while under the influence of any drug. This prohibition certainly applies to street drugs, such as marijuana, cocaine, or heroin. However, any substance affecting a person’s reactions or mental processes also falls under this category. This can include prescription medications that a person legally takes or even over-the-counter medications available at any pharmacy. Our Phoenix attorneys can provide more information on how certain drugs may lead to a DUI arrest.
The law treats all convictions for DUI the same. Whether the conviction involved intoxication due to alcohol or drugs is irrelevant for sentencing purposes.
Under the state’s statute cited above, a first conviction for a common drug DUI could result in:
The potential penalties for a subsequent conviction can involve a lengthening of the minimum jail sentence. A local attorney at our firm can further explain the potential consequences of a drug DUI conviction.
The skilled attorneys at Grand Canyon Law Group are prepared to present defenses in Phoenix court against drug DUI allegations. This can include challenging the police officer’s justification for making a traffic stop, fighting back against the admissibility of field sobriety tests, and disputing the supposed scientific evidence resulting from a blood or urine test. A strong defense can create reasonable doubt concerning the prosecutor’s case and convince a jury to return a verdict of innocence.
DUI drug cases are serious matters that must be dealt with proactively. Just like similar cases alleging driving while under the influence of alcohol, convictions could create a criminal record, force you to pay heavy fines, cause you to lose your license for 90 days, and even lead to jail time. It is critical that you be prepared to dispute these charges as soon as possible.
A Phoenix drug DUI lawyer at our firm can explain the state’s laws and how they apply to your case. We are also ready to find the holes in the prosecutor’s case and demonstrate your innocence in court. Call Grand Canyon Law Group now to schedule your appointment.