Nashville DUI attorney Lee Martin explains what constitutes a DUI with drugs under Tennessee law. Under TN DUI laws, it is unlawful to operate a motor vehicle while under the influence of any intoxicant. This often includes marijuana and other narcotic drugs that produce a stimulating effect on the central nervous system. Tennessee law does not distinguish between legal and illegal drugs. Legally prescribed drugs can still result in DUI charges. The acts of combining drugs and driving can lead to DUI charges if the investigating police officer believes that the drugs impaired the motorist’s ability to drive. Although it is difficult to measure drug impairment through blood testing, it can still be done and often involves complicated scientific evidence. Most often DUI drug cases are based upon the arresting officers observations. They will commonly look for signs of impairment by examining the accused’s eyes along with other clues of impairment noted on standard field sobriety testing. In recent years, more DUI officers are being cross-trained as drug recognition experts. This involves complicated testing that combines traditional DUI testing with medical tests that involve testing heart rates and blood pressure.
Common signs of impairment associated with illegal and legal drugs
Marijuana is the most common drug found in Nashville area DUI cases. Marijuana alters the driver’s perception of both time and space. Often, the driver will appear disoriented, drowsy, euphoric, and/or paranoid. An increased heart rate is a sign associated with marijuana use.
Cocaine is another drug found quite often in TN DUI cases. Coke can increase the driver’s alertness and focus which could actually lead to better driving. However, negative side effects include disoriented behavior, aggressiveness, dizziness, euphoria, excitation, irritability, and paranoia. An increased heart rate is also a sign associated with cocaine use.
Morphine and heroin use are on the rise due to the mass marketing of pain clinics. These drugs (opiates) are cheaper replacements for those addicted to pain meds. These drugs diminish the driver’s reflexes along with mental clouding, drowsiness, nausea, and vomiting. The driver will feel a sense of intense euphoria and a depressed heart rate.
Methamphetamine can create delusions, excitation, euphoria, hallucinations, and poor impulse control. Increased blood pressure, increased heart rate, and insomnia are side effects often associated with methamphetamine use.
LSD or acid use creates an altered state of mind that leads to delusions and hallucinations.
Prescription medications must be used with caution and all warning labels must be observed prior to driving. Common side effects of prescription drug use are anxiety, drowsiness, euphoria, impaired coordination, and slow reaction time. Please be careful if you are driving while taking prescription medicine. It is clearly illegal to drive while being impaired by drugs. This is even true if the drug(s) involved are legal and being taken under the direction of a licensed physician.
Experience Counts in DUI defense strategies
I am an experienced DUI attorney with nearly 20 years of experience fighting DUI charges. I will leave no stone unturned. I will look into the details of your arrest and formulate a winning defense strategy. First, I will examine the bases for the traffic stop and further evaluate if proper police protocol was followed by the arresting police agency. I have the knowledge and training to formulate winning strategies in DUI cases. If you are currently facing drunken driving charges in the greater Nashville area, give me a call at 615-345-1988.
To learn more about Nashville DUI defense, I encourage you to watch the videos on my home page and read my blog posts. If you have questions regarding a pending DUI charge in Nashville or the surrounding counties, please give me a call at 615-345-1988. You have nothing to lose. One call could make all the difference in the world.
I help good people restore their lives
-Lee Martin is a nationally recognized DUI and criminal defense attorney. He provides premier legal services by limiting his caseload exclusively to DUI and criminal matters. Lee knows how to build a solid defense strategy for your upcoming court date. Let Lee Martin be your choose as your Nashville area DUI and criminal defense lawyer. If you have pending DUI charges, give him a call at 615-345-1988.
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