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Charges Dropped for Man Accused of Driving Under the Influence of Caffeine

Posted on in DUI

Santa Cruz DUI defense attorneyMost people understand that a charge of driving under the influence (DUI) is not limited to drunk driving. Alcohol is just one of many substances that can impair a driver’s judgment and ability to operate a motor vehicle safely. In California, you can be charged with DUI if police suspect that you are impaired by any substance, including illegal drugs and drugs taken as prescribed by a doctor. Getting a conviction, however, requires prosecutors to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you were driving under the influence which can be much more difficult—especially if the only drug found in your system is caffeine.

DUI Arrest and Charges

In August of 2015, a 36-year-old was pulled over in Fairfield, California, for driving erratically. According to reports, the police officer administered several field sobriety tests and, based on his observations and driver’s attitude, arrested the driver on suspicion of DUI. The man submitted to a blood test following his arrest.

The results of the test came back negative for alcohol and illegal or prescription drugs. The test, however, did show that the man had caffeine in his system. Late last month, prosecutors in Solano County officially dropped the charges against the driver, stating that they did not believe that it would be possible to prove their case in court.

Important Considerations

The Solano District Attorney’s office released a statement indicating that it never intended to press charges solely on the presence of caffeine. The blood test, according to the statement, did not look for all possible sources of impairment, so it is still possible that the driver was under the influence of another, still unidentified substance.

Safety Concerns

It is the responsibility of law enforcement to help keep the roadways of our state safe. Therefore, it is understandable for an officer to make an arrest based on his or her reasonable observations, even if there is not enough proof for an eventual conviction. This also means that you should take extra care before getting behind the wheel if you have taken or ingested any substance that could possibly impair your ability to drive safely and make good decisions.

If you have been arrested and charged with driving under the influence, it is crucial that you speak with an experienced Santa Cruz DUI defense attorney right away. We will help you understand the charges against you and will work with you in exploring your available options. Call John W. Thornton, Attorney at Law, at 831-426-5800 today.

 

Sources:

http://www.foxnews.com/health/2016/12/29/county-drops-dui-charge-on-man-who-tested-positive-for-caffeine.html

http://www.cnn.com/2016/12/29/health/dui-charge-caffeine-california-trnd/

 

http://www.co.solano.ca.us/news/displaynews.asp?NewsID=1018&TargetID=18

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