Ohio laws are clear on driving a vehicle while under the influence of alcohol. Drivers convicted of drunk driving could face time behind bars, loss of driving privileges and other consequences that can have a significant impact on their lives. A growing issue in Ohio is drugged driving, which is also a very serious criminal offense.
Drugged driving is a more complex issue because it’s difficult to determine a person’s level of impairment after taking drugs. There is no Breathalyzer-type unit to identify how much of a drug a driver has in his or her system, unlike the ability to determine a driver’s blood alcohol content. It can be difficult to prosecute these cases because it is not easy to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that a person was unable to drive safely.
This issue is becoming more prevalent in Ohio as law enforcement is seeing more drugged driving cases. Signs that a driver may be under the influence of a drug include small pupils, confusion, disorientation, reaction to light and how the driver acts when talking with the police officer. Even if a driver has a valid prescription for a medication, it is illegal to drive after consumption if it causes impairment.
A driver facing charges of drugged driving would be wise to work with an experienced defense attorney as soon as possible after an arrest. These are serious charges, and it is beneficial to fight back with a thoughtfully prepared defense strategy. In some cases, a defendant may be able to successfully confront the prosecution’s case, mitigating potential penalties or avoiding a conviction altogether.