On April 22, 2014, the Arizona Supreme Court shut down the government's ability to prosecute Arizona motorists for driving under the influence of marijuana unless the person is impaired at the time of the stop. The ruling focuses on two chemical compounds found in marijuana; Carboxy-THC, which does not cause impairment, or Hydroxy- THC, which does cause impairment. The issue presented was whether the legislature intended to include "its metabolite" in the plural form which would include Carboxy-THC, even though it has proven to be non-impairing.
The filing of motions on legal issues is part of the art of "lawyering." In the DUI arena, most motions are intended to either suppress (i.e., keep out) evidence for various constitutional violations, or to dismiss the case in its entirety due to lack of evidence, procedural error, bad-faith prosecution, or hundreds of other reasons. All of these motions, and the numerous other types that are filed on a daily basis, ultimately are used as a tool to both protect and enforce our clients' rights.
One of the myths that I am determined to dispel is the idea of "perfection" in DUI blood testing. I have had far too many clients come to me and indicate that they have heard from friends, family, and shockingly even other attorneys, that because they took a blood test in their case, there is nothing that can be done to help them. This statement is 100% inaccurate.
Reading little fine print is important. Because when you signed up for your driver's license in Arizona you consented to having your blood, breath or urine sample taken and analyzed if a stopping officer has reasonable suspicion to believe you are driving under the influence. That is what is known as the implied consent law. By getting your license and driving on Arizona roads you have agreed to those terms. You have no say in which test is administered; that is completely up to the officer who stops you.
Time and time again in Arizona DUI cases, I have seen a very real, recurring problem in the blood testing that occurs to determine the BAC (blood alcohol content) of the person accused of a DUI. The problem lies with the amount of blood drawn from the person.