Top Ten Things to Know If You are Charged With Driving Under the Influence of Drugs (DUID)
1. Colorado law provides that driving after consumption of alcohol, drugs or a combination of both is illegal, if it results in the impairment of driver’s ability to drive even to the slightest degree.
2. Colorado law as it applies to DUID, does not differentiate between legally possessed drugs (prescription or marijuana) and illegally possessed drugs. “I have a prescription for that Oxycontin, officer” is not a defense to DUID.
3. Blood test levels have been established for alcohol and marijuana (THC) only. The cut off for marijuana is 5 ng/ml. (nanograms/ per milliliter of blood). The results are reported as 5.0 ng/ml Δ9-tetrahhydrocannabinol (THC). If your results are 5 ng. or above, it is presumed you’re under the influence or impaired by marijuana.
4. Test results for marijuana usually report Δ9 – THC-COOH levels in addition to Δ9-tetrahhydrocannabinol (THC). Δ9 – THC-COOH is the metabolized form of THC. It doesn’t get you high (not psychoactive). Δ9 – THC-COOH can be present in a person’s blood for two weeks after ingestion.
5. Colorado’s statutory blood result standards apply to only psychoactive Δ9-tetrahhydrocannabinol (THC).
6. Colorado does not have presumptive standards for other drugs. That means the prosecutor will have to show bad driving, presence of a drug and a connection between the two.
7. Experts (M.D. or toxicologist) are often necessary to show this connection.
8. Colorado Express Consent law requires all drivers to submit to a blood test if the officer has probable cause to believe that the driver is impaired by drugs.
9. You will lose your license privileges for at least two months if you refuse a test. You will also have to have an interlock device in your car for at least one year. If you take the test regardless of the drug results (alcohol is different) you will not lose your license under the Express Consent law.