A Texas DWI charge could result in a permanent criminal record and jail time if a conviction is obtained. Drinking and driving contribute to many instances of intoxicated driving arrests. However, numerous arrests result from people using legal and illegal drugs that impair their performance on the road.
Different drugs affect people in various ways, and a common thread is how they undermine perceptions and cognitive abilities. Some who take drugs that cause sleepiness might not stop a car in time to avoid a crash. Others could take substances that increase anxiety or cause excess stimulation, which might cause aggressive behavior or erratic driving.
The number of people using drugs and then getting behind the wheel is high, as a 2020 national survey reveals that 12.6 million drivers aged 16 and older drove under the influence of an illegal controlled substance that year. Many of these drivers likely found themselves arrested when impaired driving caught the police’s attention.
Persons who cause an accident due to intoxicated driving could face multiple charges. A vehicle search might reveal illicit drugs, leading to possession charges. Depending on the amount, someone could face accusations of possession with intent to distribute. The harm caused by a collision might bring about vehicular manslaughter or homicide charges.
Those pulled over before they cause any injuries may end up facing a permanent criminal record if convicted. Such might be the case even when the driver has a valid prescription for the substance that intoxicated them.
Anyone arrested for impaired driving may challenge the charges in court. If police misconduct or errors precede the arrest, the charges may get dismissed. Others may seek a plea bargain for reduced charges.
Challenging evidence is an option, as drug tests could be incorrect. Lab reports are not always accurate.