Even if you are taking prescription drugs, you can still be arrested if an officer suspects you are driving under the influence. Of course, the medication is prescribed by a medical practitioner. However, their side effects can interfere with your ability to drive or operate any motor vehicle safely. Therefore, driving under the influence of prescribed drugs can get you arrested and face severe DUI penalties.
DUI laws for prescription drugs
Hydrocodone, also known as Vicodin or paracetamol is a common first aid for someone feeling unwell. However, it can be for an arrest for violating a DUI law. It is recommended not to drive after ingesting paracetamol or other drugs because it could be dangerous. Analgesic intakes such as Demerol, heroin, and codeine could cause the following;
- Raspy, low speech
- Droopy eyelids
- Constricted pupils
- Slow reaction times, reflexes, and other vital signs
Thus, driving after taking some medications and other drugs is too risky as you might cause accidents and other mishaps. Note that medical marijuana, while legal in Colorado, isn’t exempted from the state law when it comes to issues related to impaired driving. If you get arrested for driving under the influence, it’s important to consult with a reputable Denver criminal defense attorney to help you understand your legal options and build a strong defense.
Blood tests may be necessary
In all alcohol-based DUI arrests, the police officers offer the arrested drivers a chance to take either a breath test or a blood test. But a breath test may not indicate the type and content of prescription drug in your blood. This is the primary reason the officer will ask you to take a blood test if he or she suspects that you are driving under the influence of drugs.
Just like any other impaired driving case, any driver has the right to decline to take a blood test. But it is in your best interest to take the suggested test because the consequences, particularly regarding your driver’s license, are severe if you refuse to take the test. Besides, the refusal to subject to a blood test or chemical test may be used to prove that you are guilty of DUI in the court.
Note there is no established limit for the amount of prescription drug you should have while driving, nearly all DUI prescription drug cases normally depend on the use of other relevant pieces of evidence to convict you. For instance, the prosecutor can use evidence of impairment to prove that you were driving under the influence. This involves the officer’s observation of your disoriented behavior, poor performance in various roadside tests, a physical appearance that indicates that you are under the influence of drugs, reckless driving, or any incriminating statements that you made during the arrest.
Seek legal help
In Colorado, DUI is a serious crime and is associated with severe penalties. Therefore, the moment you are arrested for DUI, get in touch with an experienced attorney.