Since the passing of the Arizona Medical Marijuana Act in 2010, there have been confusing gray areas in marijuana-related DUI laws. Arizona state law says that if a person has marijuana in his system he is guilty of DUI, regardless of whether that person is a medical marijuana patient. Even if you have a card for medical marijuana use, you cannot drive while under the influence of the drug. If you do, you can be arrested and convicted.
Arizona law permits drivers who are not impaired to drive with prescription drugs in their system if the person is taking drugs on the order of a doctor. According to Tucson prosecutors, pot can only be recommended and not prescribed, meaning that a marijuana card will not protect you from being charged with a DUI even with only trace amounts in your system.
However, there was a more recent ruling in 2016 which stated that it is no longer legal to convict someone of marijuana-related DUI without the prosecution showing proof of impairment. Judge Diane Johnsen wrote that since there is no scientific consensus about the level of THC that causes impairment, there is no way for law enforcement to base DUI charges on THC levels alone. It is also not up to the driver to prove his or her innocence. Instead, police bear the burden to prove the driver’s impairment beyond just blood test results.
Have you been charged with a DUI? Let the DUI Defense Team help you navigate your criminal charges and fight for your rights. Located in Tucson, AZ, the team of specialized DUI attorneys are skilled in the laws and regulations that will help you defend you. Contact us today for a free consultation at 520-222-2222.