CVC 23152e

How to beat a charge inolving CVC 23152e: California’s Drug DUI Law.

CVC 23152e is the California Vehicle Code section that covers drug related DUI cases.   CVC 23152e is part of the general DUI statute found in CVC23152. Like alcohol DUI, drug DUI involves a motorist driving under the influence of a substance that effects their ability to safely operate a motor vehicle. While alcohol related DUI cases are far more common, drug DUI cases (prosecuted under CVC 23152e) are happening more frequently. This is due to the increased use of certain drugs (like medicinal marijuana or recreational marijuana), increased enforcement efforts due to lobby groups championing the fight against DUI and the law catching up to modern times.

DMV and License issues from drug related DUI: Why someone doesn’t have to worry about a DMV license suspension for CVC23152e.

Unlike alcohol related DUI cases, there is no APS procedure for the DMV to suspend someone’s license if they are arrested for DUI. To understand why, it is important to understand the history of DUI laws and DUI enforcement by police. Alcohol related DUI’s have been a phenomonon since the automobile was invented. Over the decades, alcohol related DUIs were very common and something law enforcement has decided to “crack down on” since the 1930’s. Historically, DUI arrests were treated differently than they are today. In the past, a police officer would examine the driver and determine if they are “sober” enough to drive. Eventually, “field sobriety tests” were developed to help officers determine if someone was safe to drive.
Alcohol effects someone’s ability to drive a car becasue it effects their nervous system. Alcohol is ingested (usually consumed in a beverege) and it passes to a person stomach and intestines. From the intestines, it absorbs into their blood and from there into their nervous system (brain, nerve tissues etc.) Blood tests can detect if someone has alcohol in their blood, and can deterine the level.
Breath testing:
Blood testing has a number of disadvantages, the most pronounced one being it is very intrusive. In the 1970’s, rudimentary breath testing equipment was developed that (in theory) measures the blood alcohol level by taking a sample of a person’s breath and measuring the alcohol in it. The alcohol on someone’s breath passes from their blood vessels, through their alveoli (small sacks in the lungs) into the air the exhale. This exhaled air is captured by breath testing machines, which can (theoretically) determine the blood alcohol level.

This makes alcohol testing relatively simple.  A small, portable device can be carreid by law enforcement and used to quickly determine someone’s blood alcohol level.

Because of the experience law enforcement has refined and developed over the years, alcohol DUI enforcement has become arguably reliable enough that the DMV was given certain powers in the 1990’s.  This was the start of the APS process, the “administrative per se” process.  The rules made for the APS process involve alcohol DUI cases (where the blood alcohol level is at or above 0.08%.)

Drug cases are not covered by the APS process, or any of the Vehicle Code sections that give the DMV authority to suspend someone’s license for drug DUI.

Therefore, there is no such thing as an APS licese suspension for drug related DUI.

Court Suspension: The court can impose certain restrictions on the driver’s license of someone charged with CVC 23152e

The criminal courts, on the other hand, can restrict someone’s license if they are convicted of drug realted DUI under CVC23152e.  This is true, even if the driver had no alcohol in their system.

CVC 23152e Reference Links:

NORML (The National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws)  Information on Marijuana laws and impaired driving enforcement involving marijuana and drugs.
California DMV information on Drug DUI: The Caliornia DMV’s handbook on drug related DUI cases.