We have previously discussed on this blog the Heat is On Campaign sponsored by several Colorado law enforcement agencies and geared toward catching drunk drivers during times of expected heavy drinking, such as holidays. As part of these increased DUI arrest efforts, the Colorado State Patrol (CSP) and local police departments also increased enforcement of laws regarding driving under the influence (DUI) of marijuana on and around April 20, 2015. April 20th, or 4/20, is a day when many people use marijuana to celebrate cannabis.
This year, CSP and police reported that they took the following actions between the evening of Friday, April 17th and Monday, April 20th:
- Placed 147 individuals under arrest of DUI involving either drugs or alcohol
- Investigated 54 auto crashes suspected to be the result of drugs or alcohol
- Made 102 additional arrests not directly related to DUI
- Issued over 3,000 additional traffic-related citations to drivers
- Conducted the inspection of 913 commercial vehicles, shutting down operations of 65 vehicles and 157 commercial drivers
- Ran 20 different educational programs to provide information regarding drug and marijuana-related DUI
Since the legalization of personal marijuana use in Colorado, state authorities have attempted to crack down on drivers who appear to be under the influence or impaired by marijuana. However, many people may believe that an officer will not be able to tell or prove that they had used marijuana before driving and, therefore, attempt to operate a vehicle after using marijuana. Law enforcement officers use several tactics to try to identify and arrest drivers who are impaired by marijuana.
Drug Recognition Experts
Colorado has a special training program for officers to learn how to recognize the signs of marijuana impairment, as well as other unlawful drugs. Officers who pass this training can become certified Drug Recognition Experts (DREs). DRE officers claim they are able to identify many different physical signs of drug use in suspects pulled over in their cars.
DRE officers also utilize chemical testing to determine whether there is marijuana in the suspect’s system. If a blood test shows you are over five nanograms of active THC per milliliter of blood, the prosecutor can use that as strong evidence that your driving abilities were sufficiently impaired to be convicted of DUI. Though an experienced attorney has certain methods to combat drugged driving charges, every driver should be aware of increased police presence at certain times to avoid getting arrested.
Contact an experienced Denver DUI defense lawyer to discuss your case today
The first step that anyone should take following an arrest for a suspected marijuana DUI is to call the Tiftickjian Law Firm in Denver. Highly experienced criminal defense attorney Jay Tiftickjian understands the sometimes complicated nature of drugged driving cases and can identify all possible legal defenses and evidence that may help you. We always pay individualized attention to our clients and mount an aggressive defense whenever necessary to limit your penalties or avoid wrongful conviction. If you need assistance, call our office at 303-DUI-5280 today.