How to beat a Marijuana DUI in California case:
With the increase in the availability and use of medicinal marijuana, more and more drivers are facing charges of marijuana DUI in California. The Vehicle Code section that prohibits driving while impaired from drugs, including marijuana, is different from the code section that bans driving while intoxicated from alcohol. The clues police look for are different in marijuana DUI cases. Additionally the defenses used by DUI attorneys in marijuana DUI cases are different and in some ways more complex than the standard alcohol DUI case.
The Vehicle Code section that prohibits marijuana DUI in California:
DUI attorneys are very familiar with CVC 23152, the most commonly cited vehicle code section for DUI cases. The code is divided into paragraphs, which are arraigned with the use of letters. The (a) paragraph is a blanket prohibition on impaired driving, to prohibit driving while impaired. In the past, this covered alcohol related offenses. In January of 2014, California law was changed to expand the scope of the Vehicle Code to cover DUI cases involving drugs like marijuana. Paragraph (f) was added making it a crime to be under the influence of a “drug” while driving in California. A closer look at the vehicle code sections covering impaired driving will show you that there is a “legal limit” established for alcohol in a person’s system. Paragraph (b)
Clues police look for in Marijuana DUI cases:
For alcohol impairment, police look for slurred or slower speaking, red wattery eyes, the smell of alcoholic beverages and lack of coordination or balance. For marijuana DUI cases, police look for changes in a person’s eyes, such as pupil dilation, redness, and something called “vertical nystagmus” where the iris (the colored part of the eye) will twitch when the person is asked to follow an object with their eyes. Speaking may actually be faster when someone is under the influence of Marijuana. The driver may exhibit calmness or “being high” or may react in a paranoid manner, depending on the individual.
Defenses that work in Marijuana DUI in California cases:
Like all DUI cases, a rigorous defense starts with a knowledgeable defense attorney. Defenses that work in Marijuana DUI cases include: attacking police probable cause, attacking the blood testing methods and finding weaknesses in the police Field Sobriety Tests.