If you have a valid prescription for the medications in your system, you have a defense to the Drug portion of the DUI. The State can still pursue charges against you under the "impaired to the slightest degree" charge. This charge is all about opinions - whether this drug impaired your ability to safely operate a motor vehicle or not. You have a solid defense to your case and it has very good jury appeal. You need to speak with an attorney soon to help with your case.
If the facts are indeed as you say they are, your case is certainly defensible. You should consider hiring an attorney who can quickly get the charges dropped. Otherwise, with a copy of the legal prescription in hand, along with a doctor's note regarding the cancer, you may be able to fight this on your own. I recommend contacting an attorney experienced in DUI.
Kyle is correct. A valid prescription is a defense.
Attorney David Kephart is an experienced Trial Attorney and Jury Consultant. He is the recipient of the Arizona Attorneys for Criminal Justice President's Award and the recipient of the International Academy of Trial Lawyers Commendation for Excellence in Trial Advocacy. His response to your question is intended to be a general statement of law, should not be relied upon as legal advice, does not create an attorney/client relationship, and does not create a right to continuing email exchanges.
Based on what you say, this is a great defense. You need to get lawyer and fight this case. Marinol tests positive for THC. You need to get your medical records.
Aaron M. Black
Criminal & DUI Defense Attorney
Martindale AV® Preeminent™ Lawyer
2012 Southwest SuperLawyer Rising Star
AVVO 10/10 Superb Lawyer
Law Office of Aaron M. Black, PLLC
3219 East Camelback Road #573
Phoenix, AZ 85018
Office #: 480-729-1683
I completely agree with my colleagues.
One issue that I can foresee possibly arising is whether your Marinol prescription comes with any written warnings about operating machinery while taking the medication. I do not know if Marinol comes with that warning or not, but you might want to check. If indeed it comes with such a warning, but as you say, you had not taken any that day, then you will need to get documentation (perhaps from the manufacturer of the drug) that explains how long it can remain in your system. More importantly, you will want to investigate how long any of its psychotropic and/or physical effects can impact a person after the last dose. I'm no doctor, but I believe it would depend on a host of factors such as age, weight, gender, etc., etc... You will want to start with any literature you can obtain from your doctor, pharmacist, and drug manufacturer.
Additionally, when you obtain your medical records for defending yourself in this case, you should comb through all of them carefully yourself and see if any of your doctors have ever given you any warnings about driving with your physical illness and/or your medication. The last thing you want to do is hand over a stack of medical records in your defense, only to find a doctor's note in there indicating you were told to never operate a vehicle or machinery. I'm just saying you should look first... Know what you are handing over BEFORE handing it over. You don't want to learn about things in there in the middle of trial. Last summer, I was co-counsel for the defense in a civil wrongful death trial. We won. The Plaintiff's did not carefully read everything in the medical records they disclosed to us... It ended very, very badly for them.
But before you get too concerned about all of these possible issues that I am brainstorming, you would do well to listen to what my other four colleagues have told you. It would probably be worthwhile for you to consult with a few attorneys here in town who have a lot of experience handling DUI cases. All of the above lawyers are indeed excellent, but I would personally highly recommend that you give Aaron Black a call (he provided an answer to your question here also). He is truly one of the most well-informed attorneys out there when it comes to DUI cases. To my fellow colleagues: you guys are great too. But Mr. Black is, well... a DUI guru in my opinion!
God bless you!
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