Driving Under The Influence Of Drugs

Erie, Pennsylvania, Drug DUI Attorneys

A "driving under the influence of drugs" (DUID) charge in Pennsylvania carries significant punishment, so you need an experienced Pennsylvania DUI defense attorney on your side. The Erie, Pennsylvania, drugged driving lawyers at McCormick and Vilushis are ready to review your DUID case and determine whether the district attorney's evidence is subject to challenge. They help those facing DUI, drug crime and criminal charges in the Erie, Warren and Meadville, Pennsylvania, areas.

In certain driving under the influence of marijuana cases, Pennsylvania has a "per se" limit of how much of the drug you're permitted to have in your system. Under those laws, you can be convicted of DUID even if you have an extremely low amount of THC in your system. How much marijuana it takes to reach this level depends on many factors, including how regularly you may have ingested the drug.

Drugs Commonly Found In Drug DUI Cases

Different types of drugs exert their effects differently. It is mainly the behavior of the driver that alerts police officers to the possibility of drugged driving if there is no smell of alcohol. Common medications and street drugs are: marijuana, hash, cocaine, methamphetamines, Xanax, muscle relaxers, Vicodin, Ambien, Percocet, molly, Norco, Suboxone, bath salts and synthetic marijuana.

Most individuals are surprised to learn how long various drugs may stay in their system and that they can still be charged with a DUID days after ingesting the drug, even when they no longer feel intoxicated.

DUID cases are not limited to illegal drugs. The improper use of prescribed medication by a doctor as well as some over-the-counter medications can also result in a DUID charge. The district attorney's office or police may try to argue that your blood results show your levels of legally prescribed drugs are outside the so-called "therapeutic limits," or they may argue that your appearance, driving patterns or performance on a field sobriety test proves guilt.

It is important to note that police sometimes shift their focus from drunk driving investigations to DUID probes because a breath test showed a blood alcohol content (BAC) that didn't exceed the legal limit of .08 percent.

Some Pennsylvania law enforcement agencies have Drug Recognition Experts (DREs), who participate in DUID investigations. DREs check factors such as blood pressure, pulse rate, pupil size and other measurements, and scan for injection marks and other telltale signs of drug use. They sometimes administer additional field sobriety tests as well.

However, it may be possible to fight your DUID case, because the so-called signs of drug use can be misinterpreted, and chemical tests are sometimes unreliable. To learn more Contact McCormick and Vilushis today for your FREE consultation.