MI State Law – Michigan Supreme Court Rules In Favor Of Drugged-Driving Defendants

OWI defense lawyers in Michigan can commiserate–being pulled over for a traffic stop is a frustrating experience for anyone to go through. However, if the police officer feels that the motorist is driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, the suspect’s problems will instantly grow much larger. Previously, any indication of alcohol or marijuana in a driver’s system was sufficient evidence of intoxicated driving. However, much has changed in recent years. According to a recent decision made by the Michigan Supreme Court, prosecutors will have to work much harder to convict a motorist with drugged-driving.

In the past, 11-carboxy-THC was considered a schedule one controlled substance, placing it on the same level as heroin. However this byproduct of metabolism induced by marijuana use stays in the body long after the effects of the drug have worn off. As a result, many motorists were charged with drugged-driving offenses, even though they were not impaired at the time of the incident.

Recognizing this problem, the Supreme Court recently ruled in favor of the suspected drugged-motorists. The decision to overturn a previous 2006 ruling that classified 11-carboxy-THC as a schedule one controlled substance, means that prosecutors will now have to prove that drivers had the narcotic or its active agent in their system at the exact time of the traffic-related incident.

This change particularly affects the many residents state-wide who are permitted to use marijuana under the 2008 Michigan Medical Marihuana Act. The public voted legislation allows patients suffering from reoccurring or debilitating diseases to consume the drug to ease the side-effects caused by their diseases. Even though these people were permitted by law to use marijuana, they could still be charged with drugged-driving prior to the ruling. After the decision by the Michigan Supreme Court, medical marijuana card-holders will be able to drive and enjoy the rights awarded by the legislation.

As seen by the above ruling handed down by the high court, the law is always changing and being clarified. Those accused of criminal charges can find that navigating through the legal process is complex, and they may have numerous questions regarding options. For those convicted of drugged-driving based on finding the metabolite 11-carboxy-THC it is very important to immediately contact a OWI defense attorney in Michigan for answers. Acting quickly will ensure sound legal advice and legal representation, designed to protect your rights and your freedom.

Related posts:

  1. MI State Law – Previous Ruling Overturned by Michigan Surpeme Court on “Stoned Driving”
  2. MI State Law – New Michigan DUI Legislation Defines “Super Drunk” and Its Added Consequences
  3. MI DUI Charges – Testimony in DUI Case Questions Admissibility of Sobriety Tests

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