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  • Marijuana DUI.......

    .......What should be the threshhold (amount in the system) for getting one?

    There are two schools of though on this. One is that you are only effectively "high" in the acute intoxication state. Another is that because THC is detectable for so long, that means the person is under the influence at that time, even if he/she seems sober.

    Are they standards in LE that take this into account? If I am not mistaken, when "stoned" the levels are quite high in the blood, and then trace amounts can be detected in the urine for some time after.

  • #2
    As I understand it even alcohol leaves trace amounts in your system a while after you use it. The way it is for me anyways is that even slight intoxication affects ones driving abilities and is more than likely illegal. I've only researched this topic a little though.

    It would be nice to see a study on this. Common sense is telling me that the THC level in ones system isn't at a level that justifies DUI when it's been a month and no subsequent pot smoking. Just how long though is up to scientists to determine.

    At the end of it I think an officer's discretion is going to guide this issue. Glazed eye, bud-smelling dude looks at you fearfully and says "Uhhhhhh....is there a problem offisssser"; he's gotta be on something.
    -I don't feel you honor someone by creating a physical gesture (the salute). You honor them by holding them in memory and, in law enforcement, proceeding in vigilant, ethical police work. You honor this country or deceased soldiers or whatever you're honoring when you salute a flag by thinking, feeling, and continuing a life of freedom.

    --ArkansasRed24

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    • #3
      If he asks for a bag of Doritos, then you've got a valid bust.



      NOTE: Sarcasm meter turned to 'maximum' position for this post.


      The comments above reflect my personal opinion as a private citizen, ordinary motorist and all-around good guy.

      The aforementioned advice should not be construed to represent any type of professional opinion, legal counsel or other type of instruction with regard to traffic laws, judicial proceedings or official agency policy.

      ------------------------------------------------

      "Ignorance on fire is hotter than knowledge on ice."

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      • #4
        You're confusing actual THC content in the blood stream and THC metabolites. Actual THC in the blood is relatively short lived and a person is considered under the influence when the active THC is present. Active THC is what causes impairment. The metabolites are the indicators that hang on in the blood stream long after one smokes MJ. Only actual THC is used to determine whether a person is OWI with marijuana. As such, any level of active THC should be (and in most states is) considered under the influence.
        \

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        • #5
          Originally posted by SRT936 View Post
          You're confusing actual THC content in the blood stream and THC metabolites. Actual THC in the blood is relatively short lived and a person is considered under the influence when the active THC is present. Active THC is what causes impairment. The metabolites are the indicators that hang on in the blood stream long after one smokes MJ. Only actual THC is used to determine whether a person is OWI with marijuana. As such, any level of active THC should be (and in most states is) considered under the influence.
          Warning contains some science

          Anyway, some food (doritos ) for thought...

          There is at least 1 psychoactive metabolite of THC, 11-Hydroxy-THC. THC is converted to 11-Hydroxy-THC within the body. This metabolite may be more potent than THC as 5 out of 6 test subjects reported a "markedly greater psychological high". They also did a better second study and got the same results.

          Dronabinol (Marinol) is a synthetic THC pill designed to help patients and avoid the medical marijuana issue. The drug once ingested is converted again by the body, in greater amounts, to 11-Hydroxy-THC. Since 1999 it has been schedule III (it used to be a schedule II, gov't approved, and until THC was found to have a less potential for abuse than cocaine and heroin). Also the World Health Organization Expert Committee on Drug Dependence has recommended moving the drug back to schedule IV due to its medical benefits and low potential for abuse. That being said, the drug is being used recreational. Currently, efforts have failed to add cannabis (THC) on to the FDA approved drug as an analog. However, I have a feeling they're not done trying.

          All in all there are political, social, and medical issues with MJ.


          Comparative pharmacology of Delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol and its metabolite, 11-OH-Delta9-tetrahydrocannabinol. The journal of clinical investigation [0021-9738] Lemberger yr:1973 vol:52 iss:10 pg:2411-7

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          • #6
            Originally posted by bigislander72 View Post
            .......What should be the threshhold (amount in the system) for getting one?

            There are two schools of though on this. One is that you are only effectively "high" in the acute intoxication state. Another is that because THC is detectable for so long, that means the person is under the influence at that time, even if he/she seems sober.

            Are they standards in LE that take this into account? If I am not mistaken, when "stoned" the levels are quite high in the blood, and then trace amounts can be detected in the urine for some time after.
            If you're impaired, than you're impaired. I don't think the threshold matters. We arrest you for DUI months before a drug test comes back indicating any THC levels. As I've stated in another related DUI post, based on the total circumstances involved (i.e. how you're driving, 50 other possible indicators, results of FST's) dictates our PC for arrest.
            I'm 10-8 like a shark in a sea of crime..

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            • #7
              I am not even aware of any set legal limits for the amount of THC in the bloodstream.

              Out of curiosity, what are some cops' observations of stoned drivers? How do you compare them to drunk drivers?

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Fëanor View Post
                I am not even aware of any set legal limits for the amount of THC in the bloodstream.

                Out of curiosity, what are some cops' observations of stoned drivers? How do you compare them to drunk drivers?


                Right now my Dept has a BIG problem..Namely ZERO DRE's on the job. I've been lucky my last 3 narcotics DWI arrests all had drugs on them, obviating the need for a DRE at the time of Arrest. We're losing cases on a regular basis though with my Local Judge. No DRE = Automatic dismissal of the DWI.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Kpdpipes View Post
                  Right now my Dept has a BIG problem..Namely ZERO DRE's on the job. I've been lucky my last 3 narcotics DWI arrests all had drugs on them, obviating the need for a DRE at the time of Arrest. We're losing cases on a regular basis though with my Local Judge. No DRE = Automatic dismissal of the DWI.
                  That's wayyyyyyyyyy out of line for the judge. Officers can and do qualify as experts w/o having the total DRE program's benefits. In any state, one can qualify as an "expert" by having experienced training and experience above that of the "average" person. If the judge is setting a higher standard with or without giving the prosecution the opportunity to show the expertise of it's "star" witness (the arresting officer), then the prosecutor should appeal the rulings. While I support the idea behind the DRE program, it's never been considered a requirement for arrest or conviction and shouldn't.
                  "I'm not fluent in the language of violence, but I know enough to get around in places where it's spoken."

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                  • #10
                    One thing that I have observed (from personal experience!) is that even days after smoking, ones thought process is still kinda hazy, which supports that latter of the two opinions in my OP.

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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by pulicords View Post
                      That's wayyyyyyyyyy out of line for the judge. Officers can and do qualify as experts w/o having the total DRE program's benefits. In any state, one can qualify as an "expert" by having experienced training and experience above that of the "average" person. If the judge is setting a higher standard with or without giving the prosecution the opportunity to show the expertise of it's "star" witness (the arresting officer), then the prosecutor should appeal the rulings. While I support the idea behind the DRE program, it's never been considered a requirement for arrest or conviction and shouldn't.
                      Our Judge is a former Defense Atty....HATES most of us because we've smoked his clients on a regular basis. Unfortunately this isnt just our judge, it's becoming a state standard lately, from a bunch of different Municipal Courts.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by VA Dutch View Post
                        If he asks for a bag of Doritos, then you've got a valid bust.



                        NOTE: Sarcasm meter turned to 'maximum' position for this post.

                        priceless. that was great.
                        ‘Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go.’
                        Oscar Wilde

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                        • #13
                          i had a client taht got her third DWI for smoking a joint in the car with her daughter.
                          She really had lucked out because the cop didnt call CPS and let a family memebr get the daghter and the car. She got a felony (the third) and 4 years probation. (she was like I wasnt drinking...and I explianed that under the influance is under ANY SUBSTANCE) she then got how lucky she was with out the CPS and all.....
                          ‘Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go.’
                          Oscar Wilde

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by bigislander72 View Post
                            One thing that I have observed (from personal experience!) is that even days after smoking, ones thought process is still kinda hazy, which supports that latter of the two opinions in my OP.
                            THC, the chmeical that you test positive for to show that you have used marijuanna stay in your system about 30 days, if your smoking maybe once a week. However, most smoke on a regular basis and that is multiple times weekly, and with other substances.

                            If you smoke every day for a week, you are looking at about 50 days or so for it to be a negative in the UDS. (it builds up in the fat cells) and thats like a joint....a day. My clients are useing about 3 to 5 a day everyday.....(and we wonder about the motavation)

                            cocaine stays in the system for 3 or 4 days, and is very water soluble, meaning that you can drink alot of water and its gone in like 2.
                            hopefully that sheds some like on this.
                            ‘Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go.’
                            Oscar Wilde

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                            • #15
                              Originally posted by texaschickeee View Post
                              THC, the chmeical that you test positive for to show that you have used marijuanna stay in your system about 30 days, if your smoking maybe once a week. However, most smoke on a regular basis and that is multiple times weekly, and with other substances.

                              If you smoke every day for a week, you are looking at about 50 days or so for it to be a negative in the UDS. (it builds up in the fat cells) and thats like a joint....a day. My clients are useing about 3 to 5 a day everyday.....(and we wonder about the motavation)

                              cocaine stays in the system for 3 or 4 days, and is very water soluble, meaning that you can drink alot of water and its gone in like 2.
                              hopefully that sheds some like on this.
                              Actually, to be technical, the THC itself is relatively short-lived in the system. The metabolites of the THC hang on for as much as 30 days or more days depending on usage.
                              \

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