Colonial Heights DUI Drug and Alcohol Interactions

DUIs can be drug-based or alcohol-based, but sometimes a person might be under the influence of both. If you want to know more about Colonial Heights DUI drug and alcohol interactions and how they could impact your case, speak with an attorney today. A skilled DUI drug lawyer could devote the time and resources necessary to achieve a positive outcome for you.

Prosecution of Drug/Alcohol DUIs

Colonial Heights DUI drug and alcohol interactions do not really affect the way a DUI is prosecuted. If the commonwealth believes that someone was intoxicated by drugs and/or alcohol at the time that they were operating a motor vehicle, they are going to charge them and try to convict them to the fullest extent they can that is legal. The combination of drugs and alcohol on a first offense would be treated as a first offense whether it be straight drugs, straight alcohol or a combination of those.

Defending DUIs Involving Drugs and Alcohol

With DUIs, the way the statutes are written, there are certain presumptions that exist where they are trying to say that somebody is intoxicated. With an alcohol-based DUI, if someone blows over a 0.08, it is presumed they were intoxicated to the point of DUI. With marijuana, if there is a certain amount of marijuana in someone’s blood, they could be presumed intoxicated for the purposes of DUI.

However, when dealing with a combination of both, there is a presumption made if one is higher than the other. However, assuming that there is no presumption reached or their BAC is 0.05 and the amount of marijuana in their blood is 0.02, neither one of them reaches the threshold that will be considered a presumption, and it becomes a totality of the circumstances test. At that point, the Commonwealth has to prove that the presence of the alcohol or the presence of the marijuana or the combination of the two led the individual to be so intoxicated they could not safely operate a motor vehicle on the highways of the State of Virginia. After they go into the individual details of the case, they cannot rely upon the BAC to lead to a conviction, which means the person is going to have a longer trial, and they are going to have more facts they can actually use to fight with.

Potential DUI Penalties

Penalties do not become more serious if someone has both alcohol and drugs in their system at the time of arrest. The penalties for Colonial Heights DUI drug and alcohol interactions may still be a Class 1 misdemeanor or a Class 6 felony depending on the number of DUIs. It is assumed that there is not a blood alcohol content threshold that is reached in the case because once someone reaches that threshold, it no longer becomes a combination; decisions regarding penalties can be made using the results of the BAC alone and they do not need to show that it is the combination of the two.

Prescription Drug DUIs Involving Alcohol

If someone is taking their medication as prescribed and they are stopped for DUI, they can still be found guilty of a DUI just based off of the prescription alone. There is no exception for prescription drugs. The combination of drugs and alcohol are written directly into the Virginia Code as something that should be charged in a DUI case. The only thing it does is remove the presumption they are intoxicated and creates a little more work for the commonwealth in actually proving it, but that would be the only thing it actually does in the DUI case.

Ways a Mixture of Prescription Drugs and Alcohol Can Impact Someone

The drugs and alcohol, just like the individual items themselves, can, and in certain circumstances, will have effects on an individual’s motor skills. The depression of alcohol combined with other depressants or even some uppers can ultimately lead to an individual’s motor skill function being altered based off the intoxicant inside their body. If the drug that is being utilized, prescription or not, is already considered a downer or depressant, the addition of alcohol only boosts that depressant and slows them down even more.

Litigating a Colonial Heights Drug and Alcohol DUI Case

Normally, Colonial Heights DUI drug and alcohol interactions are litigated through a very lengthy trial process because, in those types of cases, assuming there is no threshold reached, the commonwealth has a burden they have to reach. Without that BAC alcohol threshold already in existence, they have to work a little harder in order to prove and reach that threshold. If an individual wants to know more about navigating the DUI litigation process, they should speak with a knowledgeable lawyer that could help.