Marijuana DUI in Aliso Viejo

According to California Vehicle Code 23152(e), it is illegal to drive a vehicle while under the influence of drugs in Aliso Viejo. In as much as Proposition 64 in California legalizes the recreational use of marijuana, driving under the influence of marijuana is still a crime. Anytime that a person is operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of any drug that impairs their ability to drive, such as marijuana, a person is going against the law. However, unlike alcohol, which checks BAC as an indicator of how intoxicated one is, there is no legal limit for marijuana. Officers will look at other indicators to determine whether or not someone is under the influence, such as the operator’s driving patterns, their response to field sobriety tests, or physical symptoms, such as dilated pupils or slow reaction time. It should be noted that the THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) in marijuana can alter senses, the perception of time, body movement, problem solving, and, when taken in high doses, hallucinations.

Actually, what tends to happen in Aliso Viejo and in the rest of California, is that law enforcement officers are even more alert since the likelihood of a person being caught for Driving Under the Influence of Marijuana is higher after the passage Prop 64.

In order to prove that someone was under the influence of marijuana while behind the wheel, tests may be administered, such as a DUI blood test or a DUI breath test. DUI blood tests look specifically for THC. However, there are some flaws when it comes to chemical testing such as their inaccuracy regarding when the marijuana was ingested and the quantity. If one were to refuse a chemical test after being arrested, it may result in a driver’s license suspension, or, depending on the circumstances, extra jail time or time in California DUI School.

Marijuana DUI penalties

Marijuana DUI charges are similar to other DUI charges in that they tend to escalate based on prior convictions and the severity of the specific case.

  • As a 1st time DUI offender, penalties include; a fine of between $390 and $1,000 plus assessments, 3 or 9 months of compulsory DUI school, up to 6 months in county jail and 6-10 months of Driver’s License suspension or revocation
  • As a DUI with injury felony offender, penalties include; a fine of between USD 1015 and USD 5,000 including restitution to the injured party; 18 to 30 months of compulsory DUI school, Up to 16 years in state prison and 5 years of Driver’s License suspension or revocation
Defense of a DUI marijuana charge

If you are charged with a Marijuana DUI, it is important that you get an attorney and defense team that is highly capable in DUID defense. Some examples of defense strategies that your defense may use include; you didn’t use marijuana at all, you weren’t significantly impaired by the marijuana, or you weren’t driving. On another note, if the arrest was not lawful, then the results of a chemical test may not come into play.

Johnson Criminal Law Group has a track record of fighting marijuana cases effectively. Call us today to evaluate your unique case.

Out-of-State Drivers DUI in Aliso Viejo

If you visit Aliso Viejo and if you are arrested for a DUI, you need to be careful about how you handle the DUI charge. The Interstate Drivers Licenses Compact (IDLC), also known as the Driver License Compact or the Driver License Agreement, is a coalition of states that report driving arrests such as DUI’s to each other. They very closely follow their saying of, “One Driver, One License, and One Record”. Its purpose is to provide some consistency regarding the licensing process and convictions or records relevant to it. A majority of states, with the exception of Michigan, Massachusetts, Tennessee, Georgia, and Wisconsin, all belong to this group. For example, if you were to be a resident of Utah, but were to get arrested in California for a DUI, then it would be Utah, or your resident state, to take action against your license because of the arrest in California. However, if you respond immediately and appropriately, you could avoid the DUI charges and a criminal record from being passed to your home state.

In order to mitigate the consequences of your DUI charge, it is a good idea to call a competent DUI attorney who knows the court system in Orange County. Time requirements in California DUI law make it necessary for you to respond to your charges as soon as possible and certainly within 10 days. The DUI attorney will arrange a meeting with the California DMV, and make appearances before the court on your behalf – you won’t have to appear in court in most cases. However, there are circumstances where a judge may require you to appear in court. Call our law office to find out more information regarding your particular case.

Why You Need to Respond Immediately?

When you are charged with a DUI is Aliso Viejo, you should be concerned about:

  • The criminal DUI charge brought against you by the District Attorney and
  • The California Department of Motor Vehicles and the administrative actions for the DUI charge - including suspension of your driving privileges, not only in California, but in your home state as well.

The criminal court and DMV act independently of one another. As such, our attorneys will represent you in hearings before both sets of hearing officers. Similarly, even if you aren’t found criminally liable in Superior Court, you can still face consequences from the Department of Motor Vehicles.

If you don’t respond to your DUI charge in 10 days’ time, you will not only face the penalties for the charge in Aliso Viejo, but the DUI penalty will also be sanctioned in your home state. This is because the state of California has interstate compacts and agreements with other states to forward information on DUIs and other criminal issues.

If you take action immediately and find a competent DUI attorney to represent you, one positive outcome that you can hope for is to prevent the offence from ever hitting the California DMV records.

Johnson Criminal Law Group can help you – call now.

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