When a person gets pulled over for DUI, the officer making the stop makes the determination as to whether a DUI charge is appropriate by having the driver take a breath test. Most of those accused of DUI defend the charges by challenging the breath test. Common challenges include questioning the testing procedure, questioning whether the machine was properly maintained or calibrated, and proving the result is a false positive due to other legal substances in the driver’s bloodstream. With a few states legalizing marijuana, and others thinking about doing so, now is the time to consider whether there is a test to detect the presence of marijuana in a person accused of driving while using the substance. The answer is maybe.
One news report on the issue gives the following information about the possibility of a marijuana breath test becoming a reality:
- A retired Royal Canadian Mounted police officer has been developing the machine for a few years.
- The machine would detect whether a driver had smoked cannabis prior to driving, much the same as a breath test can tell whether a driver has had an alcoholic beverage before taking the wheel.
The test is designed to determine when a driver is under the influence of an intoxicating substance, and thus unable to safely operate a car. Even where use of marijuana is legal for either medicinal or recreational purposes, there can still be legal issues that arise if an accident happens. This new technology may mean that in those locations with legalized marijuana, charges of driving after having used the substance may be defended in a similar manner to how those accused of DUI defend those charges. If you want to know more about this evolving area of law, or have questions about your rights, call one of our knowledgeable criminal defense attorneys today. We work hard to keep you out of jail and on the road, for all types of criminal charges relating to your driving. These types of defenses will likely evolve, as our views and acceptance of use of certain substances changes, and we can help you to make decisions about your case that work for you.
If you have been arrested for a traffic related offense, call our office for help. Contact us today schedule an appointment with an experienced criminal defense attorney in Stuart and the Treasure Coast. The first visit is a free initial consultation.