If you are arrested in Massachusetts for driving under the influence of alcohol, you are probably not surprised as it is well known alcohol use and driving is illegal. However, if you are arrested because you have taken a prescription drug, you may wonder what is going on. The truth is, even when prescribed by a physician, drugged driving has the same consequences as a DUI due to alcohol does. While it can be hard to defend, there are certain valid defense arguments that your attorney may use.
The Food and Drug Administration discusses why driving under the influence of drugs can be so dangerous. Certain prescription medication can cause reactions such as:
- Trouble focusing
- Slow reaction time
- Blurry vision
If you are currently taking a prescription drug, speak to your doctor or pharmacist and find out if there are reactions that could negatively affect your driving ability. If in doubt, do not drive.
In the event you are facing a drugged driving charge, FindLaw talks about invalid and valid defense arguments. In general, the judge will not accept the following defenses:
- A doctor prescribed it
- You only had a small amount
- Using a “sleep-walking”-while-driving argument
A more valid argument may be that the officer had no legitimate reason for pulling you over. Your attorney may also argue the chemical test result was inaccurate or the field test was not administered correctly. Another defense that may work is if you ingested the medication involuntarily. You may also be able to have your charge reduced if you can make justifiable claims.