If you were recently arrested for DUI of drugs, you may not realize it but Orange County has “special” prosecutors for DUI drug cases. This is because prosecuting drug-impaired drivers is a daunting task, and while jurors are typically familiar with alcohol’s effects, they often know little to nothing about other drugs.
Tainted by popular crime shows like CSI, jurors tend to have unrealistic expectations about the available proof in DUI drug cases. Unlike alcohol, most states don’t have “per se” limits when it comes to drugged driving.
For prosecutors to successfully explain the evidence to jurors in driving under the influence of drugs (DUID) cases, the prosecutors must have a good understanding of the basics of drug toxicology.
Essentially, prosecuting drug impaired driving cases is more complicated than alcohol-related DUI cases – in the scientific and legal sense. Since impairment is more difficult to prove, these cases are harder to prosecute.
In Orange County, the DA’s office, judges and the courts have determined that driving under the influence of drug cases require special handling, thus, the county has special prosecutors who are assigned to handle DUI drug cases.
Drug-Impaired Driving, a Widespread Problem
According to the America Prosecutors Research Institute (APRI), in 2003, an estimated 11 million people reported driving under the influence of an illegal drug, and there has been a growing body of evidence to support that DUID is a worldwide problem that’s exploded in the last decade.
In law enforcement, it is the general consensus that any drug which affects mental or physical processes can impair driving in high enough doses. According to the APRI, those drugs most frequently encountered in impaired drivers include marijuana, stimulants, depressants, and opiates, such as:
- Anti-anxiety drugs
- Muscle relaxants
- Pain relievers
Many drugs affect the central nervous system, and therefore can have a profound effect on driving ability. Many of the drugs that impair driving are highly addictive and habit forming.
If you’re facing DUI drug charges in Orange County, you can bet that the prosecutor assigned to your case will have a basic understanding of factors, such as route of administration (how a drug gets into the system), absorption, distribution, metabolism and elimination – and he or she will use that knowledge to nail you.
If your prosecutor knows this much about drugs, your DUI defense attorney better too. Do yourself a favor and contact the Law Offices of Virginia L. Landry, Inc. Not only is Attorney Landry Board Certified in DUI defense, but she is also a member of the National College for DUI Defense.