South Carolina Driving Under the Influence of Drugs Lawyer
Alcohol isn’t the only substance that can get you into trouble if you are pulled over by police. Drugs can also be the reason behind a DUI arrest. Driving under the influence of drugs has become so widespread in South Carolina that there is even a unique name for it — DUID. You can be charged if you are caught with illegal drugs in your body, such as crack, marijuana, or cocaine.
In South Carolina, it is illegal to drive a motor vehicle while under the influence of drugs to the extent that the person’s faculties to drive are materially and appreciably impaired.
The penalties for a conviction of driving under the influence of drugs are identical to the consequences of a DUI conviction in South Carolina because they are the same offense.
A DUI for Drugs Can Lead to Other Criminal Charges
If you are pulled over and arrested for driving while under the influence of drugs, there is a substantial chance that you also get charged with other offenses, as well. After all, the police can search your car after making the arrest in many cases, so anything they find in the vehicle can be used against you for not just the DUI charge, but others, as well.
Some of the most common charges that come alongside one for driving under the influence of drugs are:
- Drug possession. If police find drugs either in your car or on your person during the traffic stop or arrest, you can face charges for drug possession. Depending on the amount found and the type of drug discovered, a conviction on this charge can come with heavy penalties on its own.
- Drug trafficking. Transporting illegal drugs can lead to a charge for drug trafficking. If police search your vehicle and discover drugs, you can be charged with trafficking, in addition to DUI.
- Felony DUI. If you caused a fatal accident and the crash led to your arrest for drugged driving, you can face serious criminal charges for the crash, including Felony DUI.
When these criminal charges stack up against you, having a skilled South Carolina DUI defense lawyer at your side to raise effective defenses becomes even more crucial.
Legal Defenses to DUI for Drugs
While getting arrested and charged for driving under the influence of drugs can be one of the most traumatizing and scary experiences you have, the story is far from over. There are numerous effective legal defenses that you can raise to prevent the charge from turning into a conviction and saddling you with fines, a license suspension, and the collateral consequences of having a criminal background.
Of course, the individual aspects of your case will determine which defenses are most likely to succeed.
Because there are no set standards for inebriation, like there are for drunk driving, drugged driving charges rely very heavily on the perceptions of the arresting officer. This becomes a tricky situation at trial because most of the case against you will be contained in the officer’s testimony, where he or she will relate to the jury how they remember the arrest happening.
However, by the time your trial happens, it will often be several months since the arrest, leaving the officer’s memory unreliable. This is especially the case for officers who make numerous arrests for DUI and who have trouble differentiating one from the other. This is why so many arresting officers use statements that seem canned or standardized.
With that said, though, juries still trust the word of uniformed police officers when they take the stand. Overcoming the accusations they make while testifying and pointing out the inaccuracies in their memory can be difficult.
Unlawful Traffic Stop
Police officers need to have a reason to make a traffic stop, or else they could pull anyone over, whenever they wanted. If there was no indication that you were committing a crime, or had already committed a crime, at the time of the traffic stop, then the evidence obtained during the stop can be excluded from court, leaving the prosecutor with little to use against you.
Other Explanations for Symptoms
Prosecutors need to prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt, so raising a reasonable doubt as to whether you were impaired by drugs – despite seeming so – can be a valid defense to a DUI drug charge.
When the police list the reasons why they think you were drugged at the time of your arrest, pointing out all of the other possible explanations for your “symptoms” can raise enough of a doubt to prevent the prosecutor from getting the conviction, they are looking for.
DUI-Defense Lawyer in Columbia
The DUI Lawyers at the Strom Law Firm are experienced drug defense lawyers in South Carolina. His experience includes representing people who have been arrested and accused of using drugs right before driving or using drugs while in the car.
The DUI Lawyers at the Strom Law Firm have successfully represented numerous clients facing a variety of drug and DUI charges in South Carolina. His experience can help you beat a charge of drugged driving; he knows how drug investigations work, and understands police and law enforcement tactics to get people convicted.
Driving Under the Influence of Drugs Penalties
Consequences of a DUI conviction include:
- A suspended license,
- jail time,
- a fine,
- required enrollment in the Alcohol and Drug Safety Action Program (ADSAP)
- community service,
- SR-22 insurance,
- loss of your job and more.
Proving You Are Guilty of Driving Under the Influence of Drugs:
Illegal drugs are not the only things that can impair your ability to drive; several prescription drugs also carry warnings of drowsiness and to use caution while driving. If you are pulled for driving under the influence of drugs, you may be asked to submit to a test in which your urine is screened for the presence of drugs.
There are a variety of DUI charges in South Carolina. The experienced DUI lawyers at the Strom Law Firm, LLC can handle them all, including:
- DUI first, second, third and subsequent
- Felony DUI
- Boating under the influence
- DUI and underage drinking (under 21)
- Military base DUI
- Driving Under the Influence of Drugs
- Flying Under the Influence
Contact the Columbia DUI Drug Lawyers at the Strom Law Firm today
The Columbia DUI Lawyers at the Strom Law Firm are well-equipped to handle the ins and outs of a DUI or DUAC charge. We are well-versed in the aspects required to defend these charges and are aware of the rules that law enforcement officers must follow in order to be successful in their pursuit of a conviction. Call the Strom Law Firm today at (803) 252-4800 for your free consultation.
Arrested for driving under the influence? Criminal defense lawyers at the Strom Law Firm, LLC provide a free consultation to discuss the facts of your DUI case and to discuss whether to plead guilty or not guilty.
Founded by a former U.S. Attorney, the team at Strom Law also includes a former Public Defender. The firm is awarded the highest Martindale-Hubble ranking and collectively holds more than 50 years of complex litigation experience.
Fill out the Free Case Evaluation form or call us immediately (803-252-4800). Let us fight your DUI charge, and help you protect your freedom and future. We offer flexible payment plans and accept Visa and Mastercard.