Entertaining DUI Marijuana Cases

Marijuana and Driving

Ever since marijuana became legal in California, the number of people driving under the influence of marijuana has skyrocketed. This was an unintended, but obvious, consequence of legalization.

Marijuana plants contain THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), a psychoactive drug that gives a “high.” Like alcohol, THC is a central nervous system suppressant/depressant.  Like alcohol, THC impairs driving.

Studies have shown that DUI marijuana is just like DUI alcohol, with two slight differences.  First, those DUI marijuana drivers are slightly more likely to driver slower.  Two, DUI marijuana drivers are slightly more likely to keep a larger distance from the car in front of them. 

The VERY Slow DUI Marijuana Driver

I had a DUI marijuana case where the impaired driver was going 5 mph on the I-5 Freeway.

It was in the middle of the day and traffic was light.  Average speed on the freeway was about 70 mph. 

A CHP officer noticed that there was some kind of obstruction in the slow lane. Cars were dangerously swerving to merge into the faster lanes.

When the officer got to the front of the long line of stopped cars, he saw the defendant driving 5 mph.  That is the speed of a fast walk.

The officer pulled the defendant off the freeway.  The defendant was very “relaxed” and very “happy.” 

The officer asked if there was something wrong with the car.  The defendant said that the car was working “great!”

The defendant explained that he had just come from a marijuana dispensary where he bought a large premium liquid cannabis. This drink contains up to 90% THC. (“Marijuana” and “cannabis” are basically the same.) The defendant couldn’t wait to get home to imbibe, so he “downed” the entire drink in the parking lot.

The defendant was arrested, and the blood test showed his THC level at a whopping 20+ nanograms. (Under Colorado law, 5 nanograms of THC per liter of blood, is “under the influence.” No other state has a numerical limit.)

The Honest DUI Driver

I had a case where the CHP officer pulled over car for weaving on the freeway. The officer asked the driver how much he had to drink. 

Most people say they only 1-2 drinks. The breath/blood test proves them wrong.

This driver replied: “I only one drink.”  He was adamant. “I am being completely honest.”

Sure enough, his blood alcohol level was .02%, which is consisted with one drink. He was honest. However, the test also showed 8 nanograms of THC.

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