Mt. Pleasant DUI Drugs Lawyer
South Carolina Drugged DUI Driving Laws
In South Carolina, a person can be charged with driving under the influence (DUI) if they drive a motor vehicle within the state while under the influence of any drug, combination of drugs, or combination of drugs and alcohol to the extent that their faculties to drive a motor vehicle are impaired.
Be aware that South Carolina has implied consent laws in place, which presume that any driver in South Carolina is considered to have given consent to chemical tests of their breath, blood, or urine for the purpose of determining the presence of alcohol or drugs (or a combination) if arrested for an offense arising out of acts alleged to have been committed while they were driving a motor vehicle and under the influence of any substance. If a driver refuses to submit to a test, the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) must suspend their driver’s license, permit, or nonresident operating privilege of or deny them issuance of a license or permit.
Note - that an accused driver does have the right to have a qualified person of their own choosing conduct additional independent tests at their expense, though the failure or inability to obtain such additional tests does not preclude the admission of evidence relating to the tests obtained by the law enforcement officer.
What are the Penalties for Driving Under the Influence of Drugs?
The penalties for a drugged DUI conviction can range from fines to jail time to treatment programs, depending on the severity of the offense and number of prior convictions:
- First offense – $400 in fines; imprisonment for 48 hours to 30 days; at least 48 hours of public service; completion of Alcohol and Drug Safety Action Program.
- Second offense – $2,100-$5,100 in fines; imprisonment for 5 days to 1 year; completion of Alcohol and Drug Safety Action Program.
- Third offense – $3,800-$6,300 in fines; imprisonment for 60 days to 3 years; completion of Alcohol and Drug Safety Action Program.
- Fourth and subsequent offense – imprisonment for 1 year to 5 years; completion of Alcohol and Drug Safety Action Program.
Note - that a DUI stop or arrest involving drugged driving could also warrant additional charges, as well, as law enforcement can search the car after making the arrest, so if they find any evidence of illegal substances, for instance, the driver could face DUI charges and drug possession charges. Depending on the amount and the type of drug found, a conviction could result in heavy penalties.
- Possession of an ounce or less of marijuana is - at the very least, a misdemeanor punishable by up to 30 days imprisonment and a fine of $100-$200
- Possession of cocaine - is a misdemeanor punishable by up to $5,000-$7,500 in fines and up to 3-5 years in prison for a first or second offense.
The consequences could increase significantly if the driver is accused of drug trafficking for transporting illegal drugs.
Charleston County Drugged Driving Legal Counsel
Joe Good, Attorney at Law has been representing South Carolina drivers for 13 years. He is an experienced trial lawyer who knows how to put up a fight in court, especially when it comes to accusations of drugged driving. The consequences of DUI drugs can be severe and include associated charges; let Attorney Joe Good put his experience to use in your DUI drugs defense.
If you have been charged with driving under the influence of drugs in Mt. Pleasant, contact an experienced DUI drugs attorney immediately for legal representation. Note that prosecutors need to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you were impaired by drugs while driving, so your lawyer could pursue a few different defense options to raise doubt about these harsh accusations. For example, prescription medication or fatigue could have caused the symptoms of “drugged” driving you were accused of, but these are not grounds to convict you of drugged DUI. Joe Good, Attorney at Law can take a look at the facts of your case and strategize an efficient defense for you in court.