Los Angeles, CA- Justin Bieber’s pal Lil Twist has dogged a marijuana DUI charge after a Los Angeles judge rejected the prosecution’s case because police took too long to collect a blood sample.
Lil Twist, whose real name is Christopher Morris, was arrested last July driving one of Bieber’s luxury sports cars. Los Angeles police pulled him over for speeding– he was driving 69 mph in a 30 mph zone–and failing to stop for a traffic signal. During the stop officers detected the odor of marijuana coming from the vehicle.
Lil Twist admitted to smoking weed a half an hour before he was pulled over and police found a partially smoked blunt in the center console of the car. The police report also noted that his eyes were bloodshot and his speech was “deliberate and lethargic,” according to TMZ.
Lil Twist submitted to field sobriety tests which prosecutors allege he performed poorly on; he stumbled while doing the heel-to-toe test and swayed during the one-leg stand test.
On their worksheet, prosecutors noted that although Lil his field sobriety test was “imperfect” he did not perform poorly enough to prove intoxication.
Another flaw in the prosecutor’s case was that police did not get a blood sample until nearly two hours after his arrest. When the results came back for the blood test, Lil Twist had only a small amount of THC in his blood, which a criminologist said was not a significant enough to testify he was intoxicated.
Earlier this week, a Los Angeles judge rejected the DUI charges against Lil Twist citing the time lapse between the arrest and blood test.
In order to be convicted of a DUI charge in California, the state must be able to prove a person must be impaired to the extent that they are unable to driver with caution “characteristic of a sober person.” Apparently in Lil Twist’s case, the judge didn’t think the prosecution’s evidence was strong enough to meet the prescribed legal standards.
Prosecutors agreed to drop the DUI charges and chose to charge Lil Twist with speeding, failing to stop at a red light and possession of less than one ounce of marijuana.
Lil Twist case shows the difficulty prosecutors face trying to secure a conviction for marijuana DUI. Detecting marijuana in the field is impossible for now so police must rely on blood tests to detect THC in the system. Even when there is THC in a person’s blood, the prosecution must be able to prove they were intoxicated since California law recognizes THC can stay in the body days or weeks after an individual has smoked. This works to the advantage of DUI attorneys and the clients they represent, giving them a better chance of disproving the prosecution’s evidence of intoxication.
When you are facing marijuana DUI charges, you need to contact a DUI attorney immediately so they have a head start on your defense. Having legal representation from beginning to end will give you a better chance dodging a DUI charge.