West Palm Beach DUI drug arrests can have an impact on an individual’s case in the way that they were carried out by law enforcement. There are specific steps that a police officer needs to take in order for a stop and search of one’s vehicle to be considered lawful, and if any of those procedures are violated, an individual could potentially have their charges dropped with the help of a professional defense attorney. Read on to learn more about the similarities and differences between situations meriting stops for alcohol impairment versus West Palm Beach DUI drug arrests.
Stops by an Officer
DUI drug arrests and stops in West Palm Beach are similar to standard DUI stops in that an individual is pulled over for a traffic infraction or a suspicion based on the driving pattern such as weaving or driving slowly that catches the attention of law enforcement. Once the police officer pulls someone over, anything could happen. The driver could receive a traffic ticket or could be charged with a DUI for alcohol or drugs. The driver is stopped and questioned.
Depending on their answers and their actions, an officer might feel the driver is impaired and have them perform a series of tests. The officer may find evidence of drugs in the car as opposed to alcohol in the car. When someone is driving under the influence, the process, procedure, and penalties are the same whether it is drugs or alcohol.
Circumstances Leading to a Drug Arrest
DUI drug charges are not as frequent as DUI alcohol charges. Typically, drug cases are identified when someone takes a breath test and passes, and are then asked to give a urine sample. Those taking medication, recreational or prescribed, would have provided a urine test positive for drugs. Others situations for a DUI with drugs is when there is an accident and the driver is injured, making it impractical or impossible to give them a breath test.
The authorities then take them to a hospital for a blood test. They take a blood test at the hospital which shows everything in their blood. If their blood tests positive for controlled substances, they may be charged with DUI under the influence of drugs rather than DUI under the influence of alcohol. It depends on the drugs and the amount of the drugs in the blood at the time.
Drug DUI arrests and subsequent criminal trials in West Palm Beach are similar to those of an alcohol DUI in that they both involve common elements.
These elements include that the defendant was driving under the influence of either alcohol or drugs to the extent that they were impaired. The difference is what is impairing the driver. In a drug DUI case, the impairment must be proven by the presence of controlled substances or drugs in the individual’s blood or urine. Usually, it would come up with the level of drugs and the type of drugs that are in their system. For alcohol, law enforcement would need to quantify the amount of alcohol instead of drugs in the blood.
If you have other questions regarding West Palm Beach DUI drug arrests and how they could affect your case, do not hesitate to reach out to a skilled defense lawyer today for your initial consultation.