Understanding the repercussions that accompany mixing alcohol and drugs prior to getting behind the wheel of a vehicle is a crucial element in approaching a DUI charge. Prosecutors have two opportunities to convict and individual of a DUI in contrast to one if this dangerous combination of substances is discovered in a person’s system.
If the standard field sobriety tests and toxicology test proves that an individual has a combination of alcohol and drugs in their system, this fact would at the least compound one of the charges, making it more serious than it was before the other element was introduced. Having an experienced DUI drug attorney on hand will play a crucial role in approaching a case of this magnitude.
The presence of alcohol and drugs will make a big difference in a person’s sentencing. Most judges that handle a case involving a DUI that is alcohol-related and drug-related will sentence an individual much more harshly than they would have if there was the presence of just one substance or the other.
It is important for individuals to understand that prescription drugs are still drugs. When certain types of prescriptions drugs are combined with alcohol, the results can be disastrous. The combination of the two substances can yield its own symptoms, signs, and effects than either of the two separately.
There are specific guidelines that an individual must follow when taking certain types of prescription medications. These guidelines usually warn users of the medication not to have any alcohol whatsoever or not to operate heavy machinery. Should a person choose to ignore the warning and combine their prescription medication with alcohol and follow it up with getting behind the wheel of a car, the dangerous combination of substances can lead to a catastrophic on-road experience.
In some cases, an individual may not be aware of the side effects that will accompany their combining alcohol and a particular drug. Unfortunately, voluntary intoxication, which is the term used to describe the moment that a person chooses to take a drug and an alcoholic beverage, is rarely a good defense in Virginia. In fact, it fails almost every time.
Voluntary intoxication pretty much bars a person from using a lack of knowledge as a defense because it is not credible. In the eyes of the law, the individual with the DUI made the personal decision to exhibit risky behavior and combine substances.
Essentially, an individual has a duty as the consumer to know whether or not his or her medication will have problematic effects when combined with other substances, including alcohol. If this is not the case, a person should make the personal decision not to drink.
In situations where a person has experienced negative side effects after mixing drugs and alcohol, they may potentially have defenses, which may be:
The best way to approach a case as complex as this is to seek the guidance of a knowledgeable attorney who has experience handling these cases. An experienced attorney will know that the most important element of their defense is control. Their approach will involve proving that their client did not do anything that would have disregarded their personal safety or the safety of others.
For this to be an effective defense, the individual charged with a mixed drug and alcohol DUI in Dale City would have to be pretty innocent of any ideas, warnings, or signs of negative side effects when combining substances. This would be difficult, but the defense is possible.
It is important to understand that this defense is much harder to use when the person is voluntarily engaging in the consumption of alcohol while they are under the influence of a drug.
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