Marijuana DUI Charges in Georgia

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It does not matter that marijuana may be legal for some purposes in Georgia. Like alcohol, being able to use something does not mean that it is legal to drive after consuming it.

If police suspect that you are driving under the influence of marijuana, they may pull you over, and you may be charged with a crime. If you are facing charges for driving high in Georgia, call Moffitt Law, LLC today to speak to an experienced DUI defense attorney in Carrollton.

How Marijuana Affects a Driver

Marijuana can affect drivers much in the same way that alcohol does. The primary ways that marijuana impacts motorists are:

  • Slowing down the driver’s reaction time
  • Impairing their ability to make decisions behind the wheel
  • Distorting the driver’s perceptions
  • Impairing coordination and reflexes

Driving high is every bit as dangerous as driving drunk. However, there is not a body of research yet that can quantify the dangers, like there is for drunk driving.

When Officers May Pull a Motorist for Suspicion of Driving Impaired

The officer may suspect that a driver is under the influence of marijuana if they see the motorist acting erratically behind the wheel. They may be traveling at a slower speed or not staying in one lane. Police generally know from their experience when a driver may be impaired and pull them over to investigate further.

The police officer may pull a motorist over for driving high in the same way they would a drunk driver. The officer needs to have a reasonable suspicion that criminal activity is taking place.

This standard is lower than the probable cause that they need to make an arrest or conduct a search.

Then, once the police officer pulls the driver over, they may detect additional signs of marijuana usage, such as an odor in the car. They could detect signs by talking to the motorist. The officer could take the driver into custody on suspicion of driving while under the influence.

Evidence of Driving High That Law Enforcement May Use

Police may obtain a warrant to draw blood from the suspect once they are in custody. They would need to demonstrate probable cause to a magistrate, who would issue the warrant for the testing.

However, there is not yet any reliable detector such as a breathalyzer that can be used to detect marijuana on the spot.

Police may also use drug recognition techniques once the driver is at the station to detect the usage of illegal drugs. They may conduct an extensive evaluation of the driver’s behavior. This evidence would be admissible at trial when the prosecutor is trying to prove impaired driving.

Penalties for Marijuana DUI Are the Same as for Drunk Driving

If you have been charged with driving under the influence of marijuana, you could face the same penalties as if you were charged with DUI. If you are convicted of drugged driving, you will have jail time, even on the first offense. You can serve up to a year in prison on the first offense, and a second offense or any type of driving impaired will result in a harsher sentence.

Whenever you are facing charges for driving under the influence, you should hire an experienced defense attorney to handle your case. The attorney may upon reviewing your case find a way to fight the charges that have been filed against you.

Any case that involves drugs depends very much on physical evidence, and law enforcement must have validly apprehended you and seized the evidence, If not, the evidence may be suppressed. The lawyer may also negotiate a plea bargain on your behalf, so you will not face the most serious sentence.

If You’re Charged With a Marijuana DUI, Contact an Attorney Today

Moffitt Law, LLC vigorously represents motorists who have been charged with driving under the influence. We work with you to learn your circumstances because we give you legal advice on how to proceed. The nature of driving under the influence cases means that you must hire an attorney very early in your case. Prosecutors generally make quicker decisions in these cases because they see so many of them.

You can schedule a consultation with one of our lawyers by calling us today at 762-200-2924 or by sending us a message online.

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