Under the law of Texas and many city ordinances in Denton, a prescription drug could be anything that is prescribed legally by a doctor or anyone who has prescription writing authority. This may include a prescription drug that was illegally obtained and those legally prescribed to the individual by a doctor. If you were accused of operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of a prescription drug, speak to a Denton prescription drug DWI lawyer for assistance. A well-practiced drug DWI attorney may able to champion your case and help you avoid legal repercussions.
Common Prescription Drugs Linked to DWIs
There are many different prescription drugs seen in drug DWI cases. Many cases involve the Benzodiazepine group of drugs, which could include barbiturates and drugs that have a calming or sleeping effect. Amphetamines, such as ADHD medicine, are commonly seen in prescription drug DWI cases. If a drug affects a person’s ability to operate a vehicle or if it causes them to lose their normal use of their mental or physical state, then it is considered intoxication. It might not matter if the intoxication came from an illegal source or a legal prescription.
Even if a person relies on medication to function, they may be liable and could be found guilty of driving while intoxicated in Denton if that medicine causes them to lose the normal use of their mental or physical faculties and they operate a motor vehicle.
How Unexpected Side Effects May Impact a Case
The law does not hinge on whether or not the person realized they were impaired by the drug or experienced unexpected side effects. If the person knew that they were putting that drug into their system, they are responsible for the outcome even if they did not expect that drug to create an unsafe driving condition. Defense lawyers may attack the notion that the person consumed the drug voluntarily. For example, if a person drinks a soda and someone spikes that individual’s drink with drugs without their knowledge, a Denton prescription drug DWI lawyer could use their lack of awareness as a defense.
Penalties for Driving Under the Influence of Prescribed Medication
The penalties for drug DWIs in Texas are typically the same as alcohol-related DWIs. If it is a first offense DWI, it would be a Class B misdemeanor with a potential of three days to 180 days in jail and/or up to a $2,000 fine. If the person is eligible, they may be able to receive probation.
If the individual was arrested on a second DWI and they were convicted, they could face a punishment of between 30 to 365 days in the Denton County jail and/or up to a $4,000 fine. If they had not had a felony conviction, they may be eligible for probation. This probation is typically different from the first offense and may include some mandatory jail time as a condition of probation.
A third offense, and every offense afterward, may be considered a higher felony and could carry between two years and 10 years in prison. If someone was hurt or killed in the accident, the charge could be increased to intoxicated assault or intoxicated manslaughter.
How a Denton Prescription Drug DWI Attorney Could Help
Prescription drug DWI charges can be very difficult to defeat. However, a dedicated Denton prescription drug DWI lawyer could fight and advocate on your behalf. An experienced attorney could investigate the case and then work tirelessly to build a strong defense. If you are facing charges, call a skilled prescription drug DWI lawyer in Denton today.