DUI And Drugs

Arrested for driving under the influence of drugs?

According to California law, "drugs" are defined as substances that can impair your mind, body, or nervous system. It is illegal to drive under the influence of either drugs or alcohol, according to California Vehicle Code 23152(a). You are DUI if you are impaired to the point that you can no longer operate your vehicle at a safe level, or that of a sober individual. You may be arrested for DUI of drugs and subject to conviction no matter if these drugs are illegal drugs, prescription drugs, or over-the-counter drugs such as Tylenol PM.

DUI cases that involve drugs are far more complicated than alcohol-related DUI cases because there is no way to determine excessive blood toxicity. In normal DUI arrests, a driver can be arrested for having a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08% or greater. This may work to your benefit, however, as the burden of proof in court for DUI and drug cases lies on the prosecutor.

Penalties for DUI and Drugs in Orange County, CA

DUI of drugs cases in California are typically filed as a misdemeanor case except under certain circumstances. Your arrest may be considered a felony if you have three or more DUI offenses, if you have previously been convicted of a DUI felony, or if your reckless driving has caused an injury to a third party. These cases cannot be taken lightly because the penalties at stake have the ability to drastically impact the rest of your life.

While the penalties for DUI of drugs are typically the same as the penalties for cases involving alcohol, aggravating factors can significantly increase them.

The typical DUI and drugs conviction may include:

  • DUI probation for 3 to 5 years
  • Costly fines that are typically $1,800 for a first offense
  • Completion of a California DUI school
  • Driver's license suspension
  • Possible jail sentence

One of the ways that you may be able to avoid these penalties is by negotiating your offense to a charge for reckless driving and a skilled Orange County DUI attorney can help you build a tough defense for your charges.

Getting Your DUI Charges Dismissed or Reduced

Without the help of a qualified criminal defense lawyer, you may be helpless to defend your rights against the skill, wit, and legal resources that the prosecutor will use to try and convict you. Here at the Law Offices of Jacqueline Goodman, we take a detailed approach to defending your rights and will not rest until we have a strong defense strategy to protect your rights. Our firm will use a variety of defensive strategies to fight DUI charges, and we know how to customize your defense to your unique circumstances and needs.

Ultimately, police officers have no way of knowing how a certain drug is affecting your body and if you are truly impaired to the point where you are endangering other drivers. Our team may be able to prove that normal physical conditions, such as fatigue or anxiety, were mistaken for symptoms of drug impairment. Over our years in practice, we have also found that blood and urine samples are often not collected, stored, and analyzed in a manner that complies with California's Title 17 procedures.

Whatever your charges may be, you can count on Orange County Attorney Jacqueline Goodman and her team to fight for your rights and your freedom.

We never give up and never settle for less than the best. Call today and schedule a free case evaluation with our OC DUI lawyer!