Colonial Heights DUI Drug Lawyer

Under 18.2-266, DUI does not only include driving under the influence of alcohol. The charge involves driving while intoxicated and alcohol, of course, is not the only substance that is considered to be intoxicating. Driving under the influence of drugs, even prescription drugs, is still a punishable offense under the law. Furthermore, drug DUIs are prosecuted just as seriously as regular drinking offenses. If you have been charged with a DUI offense for driving while under the influence of drugs, consult a Colonial Heights DUI drug lawyer today. An experienced DUI attorney could devote the time and resources necessary to achieve a positive outcome for you.

Being Charged with a Drug DUI Despite Having a Prescription

The Virginia DUI statute does not reference exemptions for prescriptions when discussing DUI drug offenses. The General Assembly’s intent is to eliminate intoxicated drivers from the road, and it does not matter to the General Assembly why someone was intoxicated. The General Assembly feels that it is the responsibility of the individual who is dealing with the intoxicant, whether it be prescribed or non-prescribed, to not put the lives of others in danger while on that intoxicant. It becomes the responsibility of the person taking the substance to not operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of that substance.

If somebody is under the influence of a substance, then the DUI statute is designed to punish them for that, whether it be a substance that they are allowed to take or not. Similarly to the way that alcohol is not illegal but driving under the influence is, taking certain substances is not illegal. However, operating a motor vehicle while on those substances is. A knowledgeable Colonial Heights DUI drug lawyer could explain the nuances of DUID law, and also help determine whether a prescription is a mitigating factor in a person’s case.

Mistakes to Avoid in Drug DUI Cases

The biggest mistakes to avoid in a drug DUI case are going to be similar to the biggest mistakes to avoid when dealing with any kind of a DUI case. The first thing to remember is not to consent to anything. Field sobriety tests are consensual tests. A person does not have to take them, and a lot of people put themselves into bad situations thinking that they can field sobriety test their way out of a DUI. They are not going to be able to do so, however, there is no advantage in taking the field sobriety test. An officer tells them that they just want them to take the test so they can figure out what their BAC is or figure out if they are safe to drive. If they are going through all that, they already believe that the person is intoxicated and they are trying to figure out how they are going to get the person arrested. The person should close their mouth, not take any tests, and then get home.

Secondly, if someone has done most of the field sobriety tests already and has performed well, they should not do a preliminary breath test on the scene. If they do a preliminary breath test on the scene and they come out over 0.08, that is automatic probable cause to arrest them for DUI. It is never beneficial to give the Commonwealth an automatic probable cause to do anything. To reiterate, a Colonial Heights DUI lawyer would advise individuals to refuse to consent to preliminary breath tests and field sobriety tests. Individuals also have the right to remain silent and should exercise that right.

Value of a DUI Drug Attorney in Colonial Heights

The penalties for a drug DUI are often better than they are for alcohol-based DUI offenses because there is no blood alcohol concentration associated with a DUI drug offense. If there is no BAC, normally there will be no mandatory time associated with a drug-related DUI on a first offense. This can change when someone has multiple offenses or they have felony DUIs. However, drug cases often do not have a BAC involved, which is used to elevate the penalties. That is why it is of vital importance for an individual to get in touch with a Colonial Heights DUI drug lawyer. A capable DUI attorney could work tirelessly to build a solid defense for you.