Georgia Drugged Driving Charges
“Drugged driving” means controlling a motor vehicle while under the influence of any drug, intoxicating fumes, or marijuana. Testing blood is inaccurate in determining what drug was taken or when, so Georgia uses “per se” laws, which mandate that it is illegal for a driver to have any drugs in their system.
Since the THC in marijuana can show up in a blood test for up to 30 days, or you may be taking a legal prescription that is yours, a DUI drugs charge isn’t nearly as cut and dried as a DUI alcohol charge. This is because a portable breathalyzer can measure your blood alcohol content (BAC) accurately, and so can the official state-administered breath test on an Intoxilizer 9000. If an officer determines that you are high on something, and you are considered to be impaired, you have committed a crime by driving under the influence of a drug or multiple drugs.
Can I Be Arrested For Taking My Own Prescription Before Driving?
There are three main types of drug types that will get you in trouble with the law. These are prescription medications (yours or someone else’s like your parent’s or a friend’s opiates or benzodiazepine), controlled substances or illegal drugs like marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine, and heroin, and over-the-counter medicines like cough syrup and sleeping pills. You can be charged with sleep driving as a result of taking an Ambien or Lunesta and operating a motor vehicle.
With sleep driving cases our goal is to prove that you had NO intent of driving. Because a DUI-DWI requires BOTH the intent to take an impairing substance AND the intent to drive afterwards, we can assert an affirmative defense of unintentionally driving to fight your drugged driving charges.
Georgia DUI Drugs (DUID) Penalties
- Operating a vehicle in Georgia equates agreement to blood or urine testing; refusing is a contract violation and your license is automatically suspended. You have 30 days to fight this charge.
- First offense: a fine of up to $1,000 and 24 hours in jail, with further jail time of up to a year possible. Community service, probation, and enrollment in a risk reduction program are also likely.
- Second offense: 72 hours in jail, with possible additional time of up to one year; the fine may be up to $1,000. Community service, probation, and mandatory alcohol or drug treatment, as well as a risk reduction program, are likely. Your license may be suspended for up to three years. You could get an ignition interlock device installed on your car.
- Third offense: up to a year in jail, community service, drug/alcohol rehabilitation, and probation. Your license is revoked for five years. An ignition interlock device is likely.
- Fourth offense and after: a felony. Up to five years in prison and fines up to $5,000. You could lose your vehicle permanently.
Our Georgia DUI Drugs Lawyers Know What to Do
Because the penalties for a conviction are so severe, drugged driving charges should not be be taken lightly. Do not trust your future to a public defender. Call DUI drugs lawyers Larry Kohn, Cory Yager, or Bubba Head at (404) 567-5515 now. You will talk to someone from our Atlanta law firm 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You may have driven in a blackout and woken up in a jail cell. Your arrest is a blur. Let us look at your police video to see what happened, and whether or not the arresting officer followed the letter of the law when he or she detained you.
Errors in police procedure happen all the time, and they can lead to a dismissal of key evidence in your drugged driving case. Give us a shot at your case, and if nothing else you will know much more about what to do next.