Austin, TX- Drunken driving has long been identified as a major danger on the roads and the practice has been slowly declining over the past few decades. That’s great news, but as drunken driving has been on the decline, drugged driving has been one the rise. In a recent roadside survey, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that drugged driving among nighttime drivers on the weekend increased from 16.3 percent in 2007—the last time the National Roadside Survey was conducted—to 20 percent in 2013-2014. That’s quite an increase over a short period and means many more Texans will face drugged driving charges and will need a defense strategy.
If you have been charged with drugged driving in Austin, USAttorneys recommends you consult with a DWI defense attorney immediately to discuss your case and decide what defense strategy will be the most effective defense given the details of your case.
Here we will discuss some of the defense strategies that will and will not work for your Texas drugged driving case.
Drugged driving defenses that won’t work:
I have a prescription: That’s a common misconception that people have. Some people don’t realize that having a prescription does not make them immune to drugged driving charges. Whether a drug was legally obtained or not has no impact whatsoever on its mind-altering effects. Many prescription drugs can slow a person’s reaction time and make them a danger on the road. Prescriptions drugs, such as anti-depressants, sleeping pills, and anti-histamines, generally have labels warning the individual not to drive because the effects these drugs can have. So, having a prescription is not a way out of DWI charges.
I only had a small dosage- Police don’t care if you only had a small amount of an altering prescription drug, they can still charge you with impaired driving. Texas doesn’t have a zero tolerance policy in regards to drugged driving, but it can be very difficult to prove you weren’t impaired when it’s an officer’s words and observations against your own.
I was driving in my sleep- There are several sleeping pills on currently on the market that can cause a user to sleep walk and sometimes driver while still asleep. If you take a sleeping bill voluntarily, it will be very difficult for you to use the “sleep driving” defense.
Drugged driving defenses that could work:
Questioning an officer’s probable causes- If a police officer pulls you over, they must have a reason to stop you. That’s referred to probable cause. You must have been in violation of traffic laws or driving recklessly for an officer to pull you over. They cannot pull you over simply to determine if you are impaired.
Questioning if you were actually impaired: With alcohol, there are trusted scientific measures of impairment. Science tells us that a certain blood-alcohol concentration makes a driver too impaired to driver, but the same metrics do not exist with most illicit and prescription drugs—marijuana being exception.
I took the wrong dosage: Sometimes we accidentally take too much of our medication, take the wrong one at the wrong time and one rare occasions are given drugs without our knowledge. In such cases, you may be able to utilize and unintentional intoxication defense.
If you are facing drugged driving charges, contact a DWI lawyer near your Texas location immediately. Your need to take your drugged driving charges seriously and get the legal help you need otherwise you will learn first-hand the long-term consequences of a drugged driving charge. USAttorneys can connect you with an experienced attorney today to help you with your case and increase your chances avoiding a drugged driving conviction.