In Connecticut, the law is in a state of flux regarding substance-related DUIs. Currently, there is no statutory drug level equivalent to the .08 standard for blood alcohol content (BAC). Because there is no standardized testing, prosecutors may use various strategies to prove a driver was under the influence of a drug.
When facing drug DUI charges, it is crucial to work with an attorney who understands the current legal landscape and police methodologies. Discuss testing in Shelton DUI drug cases with Ruane Attorneys and learn how to protect your rights.
How Do Authorities Test for Drugs in DUI Cases?
There are two ways that authorities currently test for the presence of substances in drug DUI cases. The first is a standard blood test for the presence of drugs. This usually involves taking the defendant to the hospital to draw blood for medical purposes, which the police may use to prove the presence of drugs in their system.
Drug Recognition Experts
A new way of proving drug intoxication in Connecticut DUI cases is through drug recognition experts. These are police officers trained in highly technical tests for substances. A drug recognition expert can give an opinion that a driver was under the influence of a drug and identify the substance.
However, this qualification is still in its early stages and is highly controversial, as our Shelton drug DUI lawyers can explain. There is a rigid protocol for officers to be certified as drug recognition experts, and few have received this certification.
Other Ways of Proving Drug Impairment
The prosecution may also attempt to prove a driver’s impairment based on the arresting officer’s observations. The officer may testify that the driver slurred their speech, fumbled with their license, or smelled of alcohol. Based on these observations, the police may ask the driver to step out of the car and complete standardized field tests or breath tests. Although breath tests will not show the presence of drugs (only alcohol), the officer could use any subjective indications of impairment to arrest the driver, bring them to the station, and request a blood test.
Refusing Drug Testing in Intoxicated Driving Cases
A driver has the right to refuse to give a blood sample at the police station. Their refusal is unlikely to contribute to drug DUI charges or negatively affect their case down the line. It is rare for the police to take blood at a police station in the first place since they are often unfamiliar with the process.
More commonly, the driver will be taken to the hospital, especially if the alleged DUI incident involved a crash. There, the police can legally request that the hospital draw blood for the purposes of prosecution. A driver undergoing testing for an alleged drug DUI in Shelton should contact an attorney as soon as possible to ensure their rights are protected.
Consult a Shelton Lawyer About Testing in Your Drug DUI Case
At Ruane Attorneys, we keep up to date with the latest DUI testing methods in Shelton. Our lawyers are prepared to counter the prosecution’s case whether they use traditional testing methods, employ drug recognition experts, or rely on officer observations.
Contact our firm to learn more about testing in Shelton DUI drug cases. The better informed you are, the better you will be able to navigate the legal system and pursue a positive resolution to your case. Give us a call today for a consultation.