Annapolis DUI Drug Arrest Process
Annapolis DUI drug cases are a priority for law enforcement. If a person is operating a motor vehicle on a public road or parking lot, which means it is in a way that they could put someone else in danger, that individual is considered a public safety risk. It is for these reasons that law enforcement will take these cases so seriously. Annapolis law enforcement will try to prosecute these to the fullest extent.
If you have been charged with a drug DUI, it is pertinent that you contact a lawyer as soon as possible. An experienced attorney will be able to assist in effectively reducing or dismissing any penalties associated with your charge.
Alcohol DUI vs. Drug DUI
In the eyes of Annapolis law enforcement, there is no difference in terms of being under the influence of any substance, be it alcohol or drugs. Alcohol is no different than marijuana, cocaine, crack, heroin, et cetera when classifying drugs that an individual can be under the influence of.
When beginning the Annapolis DUI drug arrest process, officers will look at an individual’s demeanor at first contact, the person’s response time, whether they have bloodshot, watery eyes, slurred and stammered speech, and any other indicators of impairment.
If an officer notes that something is odd, they are going to further investigate. The investigation is done, in some ways, to protect the person from continuing their drive and putting themselves and others at risk. However, it comes down to the substantial amount of penalties, including potential jail time, that an officer will be looking to enforce over the individual being charged. To combat these penalties, an individual should be sure to hire an experienced lawyer to help build a strong defense.
Evidence of Impairment
After an officer pulls an individual over and makes an initial assessment, they are going to make their contact with an individual and ask for a license and registration. Immediately, when Annapolis law enforcement walks up to the window of a vehicle, they may be able to observe any sort of substance or residue of substances that may be existing inside the vehicle through both sight and any odor.
As soon as an officer smells the odor of marijuana, they can proceed with the charge. However, if they saw paraphernalia, such as a spoon, pipe, or needle, they are going to need to further their investigation on what they initially see.
Observing the car and the individual’s behavior upon first approach is very important in a DUI arrest. The officer may ask the person if they have consumed any sort of substance, or if they see a prescription bottle, they may ask what it is prescribed for. This is usually as far as the investigation can go until the officer believes that someone is in a position to be further evaluated by what is called a DRE, or a drug recognition expert.
An individual should ensure that they are properly protected after they have been charged during the Annapolis DUI drug arrest process by hiring a seasoned attorney to build a defense.
Post Arrest Process
In general, the process runs in a similar way between both drug DUI trials and alcohol DUI trials in Annapolis. DUIs are generally four phases long. This includes the stop of the vehicle, the initial contact with the individual, an officer developing suspicion, asking for a person to step out of the vehicle to perform standard field sobriety tests, extending that to a DRE examination if they suspect drugs, and then a breath or blood test. This would occur after the person has been taken into custody.
If law enforcement believes that an individual is under the influence of any substance in an Annapolis DUI drug case, they will issue the proper citation and they should generally be released.
A DUI matter will go in two directions. The first would be through the district courts. The other direction may occur if an individual has a motor vehicle administrative issue. If law enforcement suspects that there is an under the influence charge, a person will get paperwork with regards to them being under the influence. That individual would have the right to request a motor vehicle administrative hearing so they could fight both the administrative sanction, which could be suspension of the license, and any subsequent action taken by the district court, which could put the person in jail.